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Kavanaugh Accuser Julie Swetnick To Be Excluded From FBI Investigation; Iraqi Police Investigate Social Media Star's Murder; Device Helps Paralyze People Walk Again. Aired 2-3a ET
Aired October 1, 2018 - 02:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[02:00:10] GEORGE HOWELL, NEWSROOM ANCHOR, CNN: A top Republican senator says if investigators find that Brett Kavanaugh lied to lawmakers during his testimony, the judge's nomination is over. We'll have the very latest on that ahead. Plus, after weeks of intense negotiation bargaining, the U.S. and Canada have reached a deal to save NAFTA.
Also ahead this hour, heartbreak in Indonesia, authorities there say that hundreds of victims of an earthquake and tsunami will be buried in mass graves. We're live from CNN world headquarters in Atlanta. We want to welcome our viewers in the United States and all around the world. I am George Howell. CNN Newsroom starts right now.
At 2:00 a.m. on the U.S. east coast, we start with the investigation of President Trump's Supreme Court nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, and questions about who is actually pulling the strings. The President continues to insist the FBI has free reign to speak to whoever they choose, while conducting this one week limited probe.
But sources tell CNN the White House Counsel is working with Senate Republicans behind the scenes to keep the investigation narrow and to keep it focused. They also tell CNN Judge Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who testified that Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her, are not on the initial list given by Senate Republicans to the FBI.
Also, Kavanaugh's overall drinking history, which has come up in the allegations that is not apparently part of this probe. The FBI did talk on Sunday to a woman who has alleged Kavanaugh drunkenly exposed himself to her while at Yale University years ago. We get more now from that from CNN Correspondent, Boris Sanchez.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BORIS SANCHEZ, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, CNN: The ranking member on the Senate Judiciary Committee, Diane Feinstein, sending out a statement on Sunday afternoon requesting the exact directive coming from the White House to the FBI, outlining the exact parameters of the FBI probe into accusations made against President Trump's pick to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy on the Supreme Court, Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Diane Feinstein saying the stakes are simply too high and that
Senators on that committee should know exactly what the White House is telling the FBI to do. Two sources familiar with the investigation have told CNN that the White House is sort of outlining the exact steps of the FBI should take, maintaining that specific questions about Brett Kavanaugh's drinking habits in high school are off-limits, and sort of outlining that there would only be a handful of interviews conducted during this probe.
Now, even before Diane Feinstein sent out this statement, President Trump was already weighing, saying that Democrats would be unhappy regardless of the scope of the investigation. He wrote on Twitter, quote, wow, just starting to hear the Democrats who are only thinking obstruct and delay are starting to put out the word that the time and scope of FBI looking into Judge Kavanaugh and witnesses is not enough, hello for them. It will never be enough.
Stay tuned and watch. Of course, this news coming from sources just days after President Trump said that the FBI would have free reign over this investigation. That is not sitting well with a number of Democrats, including Senator Amy Klobuchar, who spoke to Jake Tapper on State of the Union Sunday morning.
AMY KLOBUCHAR, (R) UNITED STATES SENATOR: The hard-working men and women in the FBI should be able to do their jobs. And on that, I agree. But what we are hearing are reports that they are somehow trying to limit this to a few witnesses or tell them what they should do. And while the White House decides who to nominate and then that person is the admitted to a background check.
I never heard that the White House, either under this President or other Presidents, as saying well, you can't interview this person. You can't look at this time period. You can only look at these people from one side of the street from when they were growing up.
SANCHEZ: Press Secretary Sarah Sanders was also on the Sunday morning talk shows, saying that the White House does not want to micromanage the FBI. Though, she admitted that she didn't know whether White House Counsel, Don McGahn had told the FBI who they could or couldn't interview and what questions they could or could not ask. Boris Sanchez, CNN, at the White House.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: Boris, thank you. The FBI investigation that is now underway, it came about after Republican Senator Jeff Flake had a change of heart, saying he would only vote to send Kavanaugh's nomination to the Senate floor with a one-week delay. Not long before he made that surprise announcement on Friday, this scene happened. It is played out on live TV. Two women who said they are sexual assault survivors.
They confronted Flake in an elevator at the Senate office building. They demanded, they asked what kind of message he was sending to women by letting Kavanaugh vote -- that vote rather to proceed without approval. Shortly after that encounter, Flake told his Democratic colleague, Senator Chris Coons that he had to chat.
[02:05:14] (Inaudible) compromised that led to this investigation. Both Senators talked to CBS about what they thought of Kavanaugh's testimony.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was really struck that I thought his anger got the best of him. And he made a partisan argument. That would have been best left to be made for his advocates and defenders on the committee.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It makes you wonder about suitability.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In my case, yes, it made me wonder about his suitability to serve on the bench.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But Senator Flake, you identified with it. You understood.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) I didn't like that either.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) -- partisan, but boy, I had to put myself in that spot, (Inaudible) give a leeway there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: Let's talk more about this now with Inderjeet Parmar. Inderjeet, a Professor of International Politics at City University of London live this hour via Skype from London, a pleasure to have you on the show there.
HOWELL: Look, last week was filled with drama, strap into the seatbelt because here we go, another week of investigation, and given what we heard just a moment ago from Senators Flake and Coons. Does that put new pressure on whatever comes of this extended investigation?
INDERJEET PARMAR, PROFESSOR OF INTERNATIONAL POLITICS, CITY UNIVERSITY OF LONDON: I think it just ramps up the existing pressure. This issue of Jeff Flake and (Inaudible) public opinion, ripped apart political opinion. And it is -- it suggests that it is actually very difficult indeed for any kind of agreement from whatever the findings. Yet, we might (Inaudible) I might present.
It looks like the parts is partisan (Inaudible) are drawn. They're pretty hardened by now. And it doesn't look like either side is going to accept (Inaudible) finding (Inaudible) favor them. So I suspect that the Kavanaugh hearing issue is (Inaudible) going to continue to play out. (Inaudible) politics and it is clearly his time -- very well time (Inaudible), (Inaudible) impact from the midterm election.
HOWELL: Politically speaking, I'd like to get your thoughts about the scope of this investigation. There are questions about whether the White House is somehow pulling strings to limit the investigation, also the limited amount of time for agents to actually do their work. Can this be construed as a thorough and impartial investigation in your view?
PARMAR: This strikes me as (Inaudible) British Civil Service a declaration of a public inquiry. But basically what you want to do is to take (Inaudible) out of an issue. This inquiry (Inaudible) of (Inaudible) investigations would be like that. I think it's designed for optics much more than it is for actually finding anything new.
As you say, it's very restricted. It's time-limited. It seems to be handled from the White House in such a manner as to ensure that effectively that the status quo position is maintained, that Judge Kavanaugh is good (Inaudible). From the other hand, that is often (Inaudible). The controversy has already erupted on that question.
So it doesn't seem to be the basis that you take very much (Inaudible) out of this situation. So I -- it looks like the Kavanaugh nomination is there to remain in serious trouble and have political ramifications.
HOWELL: And the greater question here. Does more time on the clock, does that make it easier or harder for some moderate Republicans, for some red state Democrats to get to yes or no, or of course, have to watch on that. And Inderjeet, you know, though the narrow approach, we know that this investigation, it is underway, agents focusing on allegations from two women, Christine Blasey Ford and Deborah Ramirez.
They have not spoken with Julie Swetnick, according to her attorney. But should more allegations come forward if left unchecked? Could that further cloud the path for Kavanaugh?
PARMAR: It definitely will. And it looks to me -- the Republicans may want to also build on this, but I think (Inaudible). The red state Democrats seek to become (Inaudible) hearing behind the new public opinion polls which show (Inaudible) Kavanaugh (Inaudible) public vote, the party vote. So it looks like there's going to (Inaudible) of the Democrats in the red states.
But it looks to me as if (Inaudible) nominations are a really (Inaudible). They do win the vote (Inaudible) at a price (Inaudible) in November. (Inaudible) hold on, I think Kavanaugh is finished. The chances are (Inaudible) nominee after the midterms as a result of that.
[02:09:54] HOWELL: Inderjeet Parmar, joining us from London with perspective and analysis. Thank you again for your time. We will keep in touch with you. We'll see what happens this week. A last- minute deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement, better known as NAFTA, has been reached. Canada signed on to the deal, salvaging the $1 trillion open trade zone with the United States and Mexico on Sunday.
To talk more about this, let's bring in Jeff Rosensweig, right, Rosensweig I should say. Jeff, a Professor of International Business at the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. I appreciate your time today to talk about this. Look, it's clearly a something that's been negotiated back and forth, sometimes harsh negotiations, you could say.
But what is the plus minus for the United States, politically, with these closest allies.
JEFF ROSENSWEIG, PROFESSOR OF INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS, GOIZUETA BUSINESS SCHOOL: Politically, there is a plus for President Trump, and that he said that he that in the campaign I'll renegotiate NAFTA. And now, he can say he did it. For the United States, it's a great loss, because the only thing that came out of it was a little bit of benefit for our dairy farms.
We have 40,000 dairy farms. If we turned off our closest ally, Canada, it hurts our national security. Also, we make a lot of money from Canadians. They're by far our biggest export market, almost 1/5 of our exports go to Canada, and exports often create high-paid jobs. Also, many Canadians come to Florida in the winter, and that creates a lot of jobs.
You know that 72,000 people work at Disney World. So there are all these industries that could be affected now that we have really hurt relationships with our major ally, with Canada, for the sake of a few gallons of milk.
HOWELL: Let's talk more about that, the tangible takeaways here. So what is different now with this deal, with Canada now signing on?
ROSENSWEIG: Well, what is interesting is the Trump administration first came in with a variety of things, including to change dispute mechanisms, some talk about (Inaudible) etcetera. All that has been taken off the table and a lot of them I thought should be off the table. They weren't -- they were, you know, in there for a good reason.
So what we come down to is dairy. I think because of that, because Trump has to look like I accomplished something. He forced renaming of NAFTA, what could be more (Inaudible). And again, you know, we go back to a situation where this is our biggest market in Mexico by far, or second-biggest market. Those two countries are more than one third of our expert.
We export to 200 nations, but those two are the predominant market force. And with Canada, we actually have a trade surplus. With China, George, we have a trade deficit of almost $1 billion a day. It is approaching 400 billion. We have a level playing field with Canada and Mexico. And we have, for the last quarter-century, that NAFTAs been in place.
This changes nothing. It is just a political move. If we should be -- it needs to be on creating a level playing field with China.
HOWELL: All right, Jeff Rosensweig, we appreciate your time and perspective. Certainly, something the President will tout as a win.
ROSENSWEIG: Oh, yeah. It was really -- he wanted to get this in before the midterms. I mean that's why he put a deadline on it, and it will spin it.
HOWELL: Jeff, thank you for your time.
ROSENSWEIG: My pleasure, George.
HOWELL: Around the world and in the United States, you're watching Newsroom. And still ahead, scenes of devastation and despair. You see the damage left over after earthquake and tsunami demolished an Indonesian city, survivors desperate for food, for water, and for shelter. We will the latest for you.
[02:15:00] HOWELL: Welcome back. It's been almost three days since a powerful earthquake and tsunami ripped through one of Indonesia's biggest islands. The full scale of the destruction still is unclear at this point. Here's what we do know. At least 832 people are confirmed dead. That number is likely to rise. Rescue workers continue their work trying to recover victims from all the rubble and damage that you see there.
Officials haven't been able to reach some areas (Inaudible) hardest hit areas outside of the destroyed city of Palu. Overall, nearly 2 1/2 million people were affected by this disaster, this, according to estimates. And survivors are becoming even more desperate for aid. Margie Siregar joins us now. Margie is the Emergency Response Director for World Vision, and joins us from Jakarta.
Thank you so much for your time. To get a sense, first of all, of how your crews are getting into this area given the damaged infrastructure, how difficult is it?
MARGIE SIREGAR, EMERGENCY RESPONSE DIRECTOR, WORLD VISION: Well, we do have already 38 (Inaudible) because we do have the (Inaudible) there. And right after the earthquake, actually we lost contact with them for several hours (Inaudible). And then after that, we already have two percent up came (Inaudible) and then the next day, (Inaudible) and went to (Inaudible).
(Inaudible) not the affected area of the (Inaudible) because the beach front is already damaged and cannot be (Inaudible), and then the next (Inaudible) already have another three person come from Jakarta also with the same (Inaudible). And then also there are other three persons from the district nearby. It is (Inaudible) that they came (Inaudible) also not cool and (Inaudible).
The estimation of time around 18 to 20 hours, and (Inaudible) because of the traffic (Inaudible) already started to happen.
HOWELL: Margie, we're looking at the devastation, as you're explaining what your crews are up against. But I want to remind our viewers around the world and in the United States exactly what happened when that tsunami came through (Inaudible) here.
[02:20:01] We're going to take a look. We'll listen at video that capture the moment. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Inaudible)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: Margie, you know, we see the wave as it pushed in. And it really gives a sense of exactly what happened to lead to so much devastation. So the question that I have for you, given what we've seen, the extent of the damage so far, how long do you surmise it will take for recovery to really start taking effect?
SIREGAR: Well, learning from (Inaudible) tsunami and also the other earthquake, I think at least you need six months or at least a year. And then another year for recovery, I think that's like what we experienced so far with all these natural disasters. And speaking of witnessing one of (Inaudible) actually witnessed the tsunami because he and her child was actually trying to (Inaudible) themselves in the hotel, and (Inaudible) water came entering the hotel.
(Inaudible) and yeah, and also like houses (Inaudible) were damaged, even torn down. So they are actually affected badly. The office has become one of evacuation (Inaudible) of almost 100 people there. And the team there already there started to (Inaudible) kitchen, also for children and young child eating. And we already have some of the (Inaudible) relief items that we need to be (Inaudible) today.
Yeah, we are now trying to assess one of the worst affected areas in Palu (Inaudible) or west Palu. And hopefully we can do that, but the issue is of course, there are very (Inaudible) community right now in the area, and we have to do (Inaudible) for that (Inaudible).
HOWELL: Margie Siregar with World Vision. Again, we appreciate your time monitoring the situation from Jakarta. We will keep in touch with you.
SIREGAR: Thank you.
HOWELL: Of course, if you'd like to help so many people who need the help from this earthquake and tsunami in Indonesia. You can go to CNN.com/impact. There, you will find links to organizations working to bring relief. Tropical storm Rosa is threatening parts of Mexico and the U.S. with heavy rain. Our Meteorologist, Pedram Javaheri, is now in the international weather center with details on that, Pedram.
PEDRAM JAVAHERI, METEOROLOGIST, CNN: Hey, George. You know this was a menacing storm, just a couple of days ago, a category four system. It has weakened to a shell of its former self, but something impressive here as far as what is in store across portions of the southwest. It moves ashore we think sometime in the next six or so hours. This system will make landfall across the Baja, Mexico and then go into Late Monday afternoon, Monday evening, and eventually into Tuesday afternoon. The storm system becomes a tropical depression, produces a tremendous
amount of rainfall potentially into the southwestern United States. In fact, as it moves ashore here, it could bring down as much as three to six months worth of rainfall across portions of the southwest. And that's some competition. There is another storm system back approaching areas of central California.
That will drop farther toward the south as well. And that will potentially bring additional heavy rainfall as well. So we'll take you through Tuesday afternoon with the rains that are in store across Phoenix, heading down towards Tucson, eventually up towards the (Inaudible) rim to the north. And then notice the next system comes in.
With it, rainfall into southern California, and that's winter weather right there across the highest elevations of the sierra. Some snow showers possible because of the cooler temperatures, of course, as we approach here, as we work our way into the month of October. But certainly, the heaviest rainfall going to be felt across portions of the southwest, in particular Arizona there, where we do have about 11 million people in the southwest underneath flood watches.
How much rainfall are we talking? Again, four to six inches possible in a few isolated pockets, but (Inaudible) look at Phoenix, in particular, they average about eight inches of rainfall in any given year. Two to three inches could come down essentially, a third to a quarter of its annual rainfall total possibly there inside the next couple of days.
Quick glance at what's happening on the other side of the Pacific Ocean, the western pacific, very busy season across this region. This is typhoon Kong-Rey sitting there with 110 mile per hour winds, 160 kilometers per hour. If you're in tune with that scale, that is equivalent to a strong category two feature here. And it's been as busy as it comes across this portion of the world.
Just about every single metric from tropical storms to typhoons to super typhoons are above average in this part of the world. And certainly, a storm we are watching carefully because it's poised to strengthen potentially to a category four system, and then approach areas of southern Japan or eastern China, where tens of millions could be impacted in about five days time. So we're going to watch this here, George, as we go into the heart of the week.
[02:25:04] HOWELL: We'll keep in touch with you. Pedram Javaheri, thank you so much. And now to the United Kingdom, where the cloud of Brexit continues to loom large, as British conservatives kickoff day two of their conference in Birmingham, the Prime Minister of the nation, Theresa May, insists her checkers plan can still work, that, despite it being rejected by the E.U. and even some members of her own party.
CNN's Bianca Nobilo is following the story and joins us now in Birmingham, England. And Bianca, it seems that September was difficult for the Prime Minister, her foreign secretary even penning an op-ed describing her plan as a humiliation. Where does Ms. May take it from here?
BIANCA NOBILO, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: It is going to be a very bumpy conference for the Prime Minister, George. And September was pretty excruciating for the Prime Minister in terms of political jabs from her former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. And it's only day two of the party conference here in Birmingham.
And Boris is already dominating almost all of the headlines, much to the Prime Minister's disappointment I am sure, because she's keen not only to push the positives of her Brexit plan, but also a fresh domestic agenda. We've just come off the back of the Labor Party, the official opposition party here in the U.K. that had the successful conference by most metrics and suggested a lot of fresh policy ideas.
Something which the government is really struggling to do because it is so bogged down by Brexit. And all of the disputes within the Prime Minister's own party are being laid bare already with Boris criticizing her plans, as you mentioned, her cabinet weighing in to support the Prime Minister and criticizing Boris.
We heard from the chancellor who said that Boris isn't good at grown up politics and doesn't think he'll ever be Prime Minister, a put down there to put the former foreign secretary back in his place. So things are getting off to a fairly rocky start here in Birmingham, which is quite a microcosm of how the country is feeling at large, as it only voted to leave in the referendum by about 3,800 votes.
So you feel a very strong sense of feeling on both sides of the referendum debate.
HOWELL: And there continue to be the questions about Ms. May's leadership, the question of whether there could be another referendum around the corner. Look. Also, the Prime Minister's plan, she is offering this idea of a national festival to celebrate a post-Brexit U.K. And the question that some are asking is whether this is appropriate.
NOBILO: So, yes. That was yesterday where the Prime Minister announced this festival for Brexit Britain. It would be in 2022, and costs in the vicinity of 120 million pounds. She said that it would celebrate the innovation that the U.K. has to offer and also the precious union between Northern Island and the United Kingdom.
It hasn't got the traction she was probably hoping for. In fact, it became a mocking hashtag on social media for people alluding to -- well, the former Brexit Secretary David Davis said many months ago that Brexit wouldn't descend into a Mad Max-style dystopia, but that's exactly what people on social media picked up on, to mock what this Brexit Britain festival would look like in 2022, so more bad news for the Prime Minister there.
As I mentioned, she is desperate to push this domestic agenda that she has. But everything seems to come back to two things, this conference, and that is Brexit, and Boris. Now, the Foreign Secretary, the Former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson isn't even here yet. He is expected to address the rally tomorrow. So we'll have to watch that space. And a lot of difficulties for the Prime Minister lie ahead here, George. That is for sure.
HOWELL: Bianca Nobilo following the story live for us in Birmingham, England. Thank you again for the reporting. We'll keep in touch with you. Here in United States, a sex crimes prosecutor who questioned Kavanaugh's accuser is giving her assessment of the testimony. We'll have what she says (Inaudible) whether she would bring a case against the judge. That story ahead as Newsroom continues.
[02:32:18] GEORGE HOWELL, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Live around the world and to our viewers it the United States this hour. You're watching CNN Newsroom from Atlanta. I'm George Howell with the headlines we're following for you. Negotiators from the United States and Canada just beat the midnight deadline agreeing to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement better known as NAFTA. Canada has now signed on to this rewritten agreement with the U.S. and Mexico.
U.S. officials say the deal will address trade imbalances and rules for auto exports as well as open up Canada's dairy sector. In Indonesia, officials plan to hold mass burials on Monday this -- for victims of Friday's devastating earthquake and tsunami. More than 830 people were killed in this disaster and that number is expected to rise. Rescue workers are scrambling to dig out any survivors, anything that they can fine who are still trapped in the rubble.
A source tells CNN the FBI has spoken with Deborah Ramirez in its investigation into Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Ramirez has accused Kavanaugh of exposing himself to her at a party when they both attended Yale University. Kavanaugh denies that ever happened. The source says Ramirez gave the name of witnesses to the FBI. Sources tell CNN that Christine Blasey Ford and Judge Kavanaugh are not on the FBI's initial list of witnesses.
Both of course testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week. But there's another woman who wants to talk to investigators. We got more on that story from CNN's Sara Sidner.
SARA SIDNER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The newly ordered FBI background investigation has begun into Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. After questions over its scope, the president responded with this.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The FBI I believe is doing a really great job. They have been all over. They have (INAUDIBLE) they're going to do whatever they have to do whatever it is they do. They'll be doing things that we never even thought of.
SIDNER: So far it appears FBI agents are focusing on the accusations of two women, Deborah Ramirez who says she met Kavanaugh while the two attended Yale and Christine Blasey Ford who says she met Kavanaugh in high school. The Senate Judiciary Committee and the country has already heard the emotion filled sworn testimony from Dr. Blasey Ford who says as a teen Kavanaugh held her down and she thought he was going to rape her while he and his friend Mark Judge were drunk.
CHRISTINE BLASEY FORD, BRETT KAVANAUGH ACCUSER: Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The laugh -- the uproarious laughter between the two and they're having fun at my expense.
SIDNER: Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh at times tearfully and often angrily denied the allegations against him.
BRETT KAVANAUGH, NOMINEE TO SERVE AS AN ASSOCIATE JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES: My family and my name have been totally and permanently destroyed by vicious and false additional accusations.
[02:35:09] SIDNER: But neither the committee nor the country has heard of full accounting from Kavanaugh's two other accusers. Deborah Ramirez told The New Yorker the details are fuzzy, but she remembers playing a drinking game with Kavanaugh and his friend in a Yale dorm room where she quickly became inebriated. She says after carefully assessing her memories, she remembers this. Brett was laughing she told The New Yorker.
I can still see his face and his hips coming forward like when you pull up your pants. Somebody yelled down the hall, Brett Kavanaugh just put his penis in Debbie's face. So far, Julie Swetnick, the third to come forward with accusations against Kavanaugh has heard nothing from investigators.
JULIE SWETNICK, BRETT KAVANAUGH ACCUSER: If he's going to have that seat legitimately, all of these things should be investigated because from what I experienced firsthand, I don't think he belongs on the Supreme Court.
SIDNER: She is the only one of the three to have initially sent a sworn declaration under penalty of perjury to the Senate Judiciary Committee. In it, she claimed she witnessed Kavanaugh being abusive toward girls and attempting to remove or shift their clothes to expose private body parts. She says that party she witnessed efforts by Mark Judge, Brett Kavanaugh, and others to cause girls to become inebriated and disoriented, so they could then gang raped.
She does not say she saw Kavanaugh actually taking part in a rape. Her attorney said she stopped going to the parties after she herself was gang raped at one of those parties. Kavanaugh was asked about her allegations.
SEN. DIANNE FEINSTEIN (D), CALIFORNIA: What you're saying if I understand it is that the allegations by Dr. Ford, Ms. Ramirez, and Ms. Swetnick are wrong?
KAVANAUGH: Yes. That is emphatically what I'm saying.
SIDNER: Swetnick's attorney, Micheal Avenatti says she has not been contacted by the FBI and the clock is ticking. Sara Sidner, CNN, Los Angeles.
(END VIDEOTPE) HOWELL: Let's talk more about this now with CNN Legal Analyst,
Michael Zeldin. Michael also a former federal prosecutor joining us via Skype this hour. Thank you so much for your time, Michael. Let's start by talking about what we're hearing from Rachel Mitchell. Now, Rachel Mitchell conducted the questioning for Republicans during the hearing of Brett Kavanaugh. And in a memorandum, two Republican senator she says a, "Reasonable prosecutor would not bring a case against Brett Kavanaugh based on Christine Blasey Ford's sexual assault allegation given the evidence she says presented to the Judiciary Committee."
Again, she also questioned Blasey Ford as well given her thoughts here, what's assessment?
MICHAEL ZELDIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL LEGAL ANALYST: Well, you have to understand who she is in relation to this case which is to say that she was hired by the Republican majority and the Senate Judiciary Committee for the purpose of conducting the inquiry on their behalf. So she is essentially not an independent neutral but a hired gun for the Republicans, so one would expect that. That said her assessment maybe correct and that most of these cases look for some form of corroborative evidence.
That's what the FBI are going to start looking for now that they've been granted the permission to go forward with that respect.
HOWELL: And also I want to talk to you about the scope of this investigation. We always know, Michael, that it would be narrow and last no more than a week. But now, the White House is pushing back against reporting that they are somehow micro managing who investigators can speak to. Listen to this Kellyanne Conway from earlier today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: The White House is not getting involved in the FBI investigation in that way. The president very much respects the independence of the FBI and feels as he said last night that they should be looking at anything that they think is credible within this limited scope. Now, we're --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What does that mean a limited scope?
CONWAY: Well, that's up to the FBI. In other words, I'm not involve in those specific conversations --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- Don McGahn say you can interview these witnesses but don't interview these witnesses?
CONWAY: I don't think Don McGahn would do that. But have not talk to him about it let me be clear. But he would not -- we're not trying to interfere. If the president who is saying go ahead, and by the way, it's also the Republicans senators as you saw including Senator Flake and others who have said, please, go forward with this FBI investigation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: And if you parse every word there from Kellyanne Conway with my colleague Jake Tapper, you can see that she leaves a little a room -- a wiggle room there a little room for gray in her answer about this. But given the questions here, Michael, about limitations, do you see this as an investigation that can really bear anything new?
ZELDIN: If the investigators have free rein to follow the leads then they could perhaps come to some determination about what Ford said and what Kavanaugh said. If they are circumscribed that is they can only speak to a certain known witnesses and that's it then this is not really an investigation. It's the appearance of an investigation with no real authority to proceed. In these background investigations, always the last question the investigator asks the witness is, who else should I speak to that may have knowledge of this?
[02:40:19] And they are given or not given names depending and if they are given names they are in the ordinary course free to pursue those other individuals. If that's the case here, good. If that's not the case, that is a don't ask that last question. They only ask people who are presently known two or three people that Blasey Ford said were at the part then this is not really an investigation.
HOWELL: All right. Look, we're hearing from senators Jeff Flake and Chris Coons both who agreed to extend this investigation by a week that if there's an indication that Kavanaugh lied during the hearing that his confirmation would be over. What kind of things will investigators be able to review to scrutinize Kavanaugh's account?
ZELDIN: Well, that's a very good question. You would think that anything that is material to the inquiry would be subject to review by the FBI. That is which bears on the essential allegations that have been put forth by at least two and perhaps the third accuser of Kavanaugh to see whether he said anything that now can be proven to be untrue whether he said he was at a party on the 7th or the 6th whether he drank one beer or two beers, I don't think it's material.
It is material if he says I didn'4t do something and it's provable that he did do something of that magnitude I think his invest -- his nomination is over.
HOWELL: And, you know, we know that the results of the FBI's investigation will remain confidential only among senators. We also know that it won't draw any conclusions around what agents find. Senators will be left to do that task. So the question here, do you see this as a process that can avoid being politicized where lawmakers then effectively see want to see?
ZELDIN: Well, one always sees what they want to see in these types of investigations. I think the investigative report will go to White House Counsel McGahn and the senators, and if it's just gray, that is subject to interpretation, those who came into the investigation with the notion that this was credible but required additional corroborative evidence will come out of it in the same way and Kavanaugh will be confirmed 51 to 49 or 52 to 48.
If there's something in there that is materially different than what Kavanaugh testified to or which can corroborate anything that Blasey ford said then there's no known answer to whether he'll be confirmed.
HOWELL: Michael Zeldin, thank you so much again for your time and perspective.
ZELDIN: My pleasure.
HOWELL: And still to come this hour, fears of a growing trend in Iraq after a social media star and former beauty queen is gunned down in the capital of that nation.
[02:46:22] HOWELL: Iraqi officials are investigating a disturbing trend after the killing of another outspoken female personality. Tara Fares was a former beauty queen. Her lifestyle challenged the conservative norms of her nation. Our Ben Wedeman has this report.
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: She was a social media personality. The likes of which Iraq hadn't seen. 22-year-old Tara Fares projected an image on Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube of a fun, loving, carefree, modern young woman unencumbered by the norms of a society with a strong streak of conservatism.
Last Thursday, unknown gunmen shot her three times in her car in central Baghdad. Her death caught on closed-circuit television. Tara Fares was born out of the mold, the daughter of an Iraqi Christian father and a Lebanese Shia Muslim mother. She won the title of Miss Baghdad, and in 2014 was the runner-up for Miss Iraq.
But as she explains in this interview, her short life story was not always a happy one. She married at 16 and soon gave birth to a son. But her husband beat her she says and forced her to leave school. Divorced soon followed. After forcibly taking away their son, her ex- husband moved to Turkey and remarried.
Yet, she carried on. Gaining fame for her daring posts, winning millions of online followers. Three years ago, she left Baghdad and moved to Erbil, in Iraqi Kurdistan where she felt safer. But often returned to her native city for photo shoots and to visit her family.
Fares is just the latest online female personality or activist to die an untimely death in Iraq, and the government has launched an investigation to see if there's a link between them.
Fares' murder sparked an outburst of grief from her followers but not all mourn for death. One journalist with state media calling her a whore on social media he has subsequently been fired. The last image to appear on her Instagram account shows her in black-and-white with the words, "peace be upon her soul, Tara Fares." Ben Wedeman, CNN, Beirut.
HOWELL: Ben, thank you. Doctors didn't think it was possible, but a paralyzed woman is walking again. This thanks to a breakthrough device. You see how it works, ahead.
[02:51:00] PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN INTERNATIONAL METEOROLOGIST: Good Monday to meteorologists Pedram Javaheri for CNN "WEATHER WATCH". October is upon us, the warmth certainly not going anywhere at least not anytime soon across the Southern U.S.
Well, back towards the west and wet weather tell you about and off towards the Northeast we do have a system swinging by as well that will cause for some inclement weather across this region. Maybe some disruptions into the airports in and around parts of the Upper Midwest into Monday afternoon.
But highs look as such, how about 23 in Chicago. Very mild if you ask me for this time of year. New York does one better at 24 degrees and we do have some big-time heat background portions of the Southwest into the upper 20's to lower 30s there.
But, notice the cool air that's in place at least in areas of Canada. It retreats rather quickly and eventually, we have a pretty widespread swath of warm air locked in across the Northeastern United States climbing up to 26 degrees. 21 what is normal for this time of year. By this weekend, we'll approach that as some cooler air is in store.
We also have a tropical system to tell you about. Not very impressive on satellite imagery, but it's really the area's it's going to impact that's going to be more impressive the heavy rainfall as a tropical depression at that point worse this way into one of the driest corners of the United States into the Sonoran in Mojave Deserts, there was some heavy rainfall certainly.
Nassau, afternoon thunderstorms will go for about 30 degrees. Kingston same score, Belize City also at 30 degrees there with a few storms possible. And that as comes in with a high 37 in sunny skies.
HOWELL: An amazing medical development to tell you about in the state of Florida. A young woman was paralyzed four years ago, and doctors told her that she would never walk again. But a breakthrough technology has changed all of that. Our senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen has this story for you.
ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: At age 19, Kelly Thomas a young woman raised on a cattle farm, an avid equestrian was injured in a rollover truck accident.
KELLY THOMAS, PARALYSIS PATIENT: I broke my neck at C7-T1 and got a spinal cord injury.
COHEN: She was paralyzed from the chest down. Her doctors told her she would never walk again. But in February, three years after her accident, Thomas defied them all, taking these first steps.
How did that feel?
THOMAS: I cried.
COHEN: This small device, put her back on her feet. Surgically implanted, it sends electrical impulses to her spine. They mimicked the signals her brain used to send before her accident. And after seven months, Thomas has made even more progress.
She can walk around her house, walk into her bathroom and see her reflection standing in the mirror. She can walk along her front porch or through grass in her yard that's harder to traverse.
THOMAS: I can walk into the library or walk into dinner with friends. It makes me feel normal again.
COHEN: She showed me how.
Your simulator is off right now.
COHEN: Can you move your legs?
THOMAS: I can't.
COHEN: Now, let's see you turn it on.
THOMAS: With this setting that I have selected, I can move my leg.
COHEN: That's amazing. Her phenomenal accomplishment is reported this week in the New England Journal of Medicine. In the study by researchers at the University of Louisville, four paralyzed patients were implanted with the device.
Two of them, Thomas in this man were able to walk again after intense physical training. Another study out this week, this one from the Mayo Clinic, confirms these findings. The researchers report that one of their paralyzed patients also walked after getting a stimulator but with assistance.
You were paralyzed. You could not move your legs, and now you can walk.
[02:55:01] THOMAS: Yes.
COHEN: What word would you use to describe how that feels?
THOMAS: It's out of this world it really is.
COHEN: Each step is exhilarating and exhausting. THOMAS: Come on, feet.
COHEN: This is hard work. You don't just turn on the simulator and go.
THOMAS: That's absolutely right. It's not a quick fix to being paralyzed. Every single step, I have to focus.
COHEN: She hopes others one day will experience a similar transformation.
THOMAS: Nothing's going to be able to stop me in life because I took something that was thought to be impossible and I turned it into possible.
COHEN: Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, Lecanto, Florida.
HOWELL: Elizabeth, thank you. And thank you for being with us for this hour of CNN NEWSROOM. I'm George Howell at the CNN center in Atlanta. Let's do it again. Another hour of news right after the break. Stay with us.
HOWELL: Republican Senators, say if investigators find that Brett Kavanaugh lies to lawmakers during his testimony, judges nomination is over. That from Jeff Flake. The latest on that ahead.