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STATE OF THE UNION
11 Killed in Pittsburgh Synagogue Mass Shooting; Officials Brief Press on Synagogue Shooting; Interview With Former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci; Interview With California Congressman Adam Schiff. Aired 9-10:15a ET
Aired October 28, 2018 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Acts of hate. A gunman storms a Pittsburgh temple, killing Jewish congregants gathered for the Sabbath.
ROBERT JONES, FBI SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE: This is the most horrific crime scene I have seen in 22 years with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
TAPPER: A horrific attack motivated by bigotry and anti-Semitism. The mayor of Pittsburgh will be here.
Plus: terror by mail -- an accused bomber charged with terrorizing people whom the president has criticized. President Trump blames the media.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Unfair coverage, deep hostility and negative attacks.
TAPPER: Should he turn down his harsh rhetoric? We will talk to one of the bomber's targets, Democratic donor Tom Steyer, and the president's former communications director, Anthony Scaramucci.
And consumed by violence -- a week of horrible, hate-fueled attacks as the country approaches a critical election. Can the nation's political leaders help us heal?
TAPPER: Hello. I'm Jake Tapper in Washington, where the state of our union is, frankly, devastated.
Eleven innocent people were brutally murdered Saturday when an anti- Semitic gunman opened fire inside a Pittsburgh synagogue, turning a peaceful place of worship and hope into a crime scene of death and destruction.
The gunman, armed with an assault weapon and at least three handguns, stormed the sanctuary, shouting anti-Semitic slurs. Two police officers and two SWAT officers were wounded in the confrontation. One FBI officer -- one FBI official calls it -- quote -- "the most
horrific crime scene he's ever seen."
Today, the alleged government is in custody and facing 29 federal charges, including hate crimes.
On Saturday, President Trump denounced anti-Semitism and called for the death penalty for the shooter.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: This evil anti-Semitic attack is an assault on all of us. It's an assault on humanity.
It will require all of us working together to extract the hateful poison of anti-Semitism from our world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TAPPER: The brutal slaughter in Pittsburgh ends what's been a hate- filled week in the United States of America.
A mail bomber terrorized former presidents and others whom President Trump has singled out for criticism, and a shooter targeted and murdered two African-Americans in Kentucky, after failing to storm a largely African-American church, all of this in the days before what's been described as likely as the -- likely the deadliest attack on Jews in the history of the United States.
CNN's Jessica Dean joins me now from Pittsburgh, where officials are about to brief reporters.
And, Jessica, this massacre happened about 24 hours ago. What are we expecting to hear at this news conference any minute now?
JESSICA DEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, any minute now, Jake.
In fact, right now, they are announcing who's going to be speaking at this news conference. We are expecting to hear the identities of the 11 victims.
And we know from the criminal complaint that eight of those were male, three of them female. So we're expecting to learn more about that, plus the supporting affidavit. So we're going to get some more details about what happened yesterday.
But we do know that criminal charges have been filed against the alleged shooter in this, 29 counts. These are hate crimes that he has been charged with.
So we're expecting to hear more about all of that. Again, we're going to hear from the U.S. attorney. We're going to hear from the special agent in charge of this FBI investigation, and we are hoping to hear from them very soon.
In the meantime, we were in Squirrel Hill, that neighborhood where the shooting happened yesterday. And we were there for a vigil when the entire community came outside and gathered around. They are bracing to hear these names, many of them going to be personally affected.
So, again, we're expecting to hear from them any moment now. We're going to bring that to you as soon as we can -- Jake.
TAPPER: All right, Jessica Dean, thanks so much.
And as soon as they start that press conference, we will bring it to you live.
But, until then, here with me in studio is Congressman Adam Schiff, Democrat of California. He's the ranking member on the House Intelligence Committee. He has been outspoken about rising anti- Semitism around the world.
You also happen to be Jewish, I should point out, as am I.
You're the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee. Have you been briefed on this shooting? And what can you tell us about motive, beyond the obvious that this was an anti-Semite filled with rage, based on his social media posts?
REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D), CALIFORNIA: I have had only preliminary briefings.
And I don't have that much to add, beyond what the public already knows. I think, clearly, these were acts of hate motivated by anti- Semitism.
Certainly, the social media posts are probably the best window into where the shooter was coming from. And they're bile-filled, and there are frequent references to anti-Semitic slurs and different tropes about Jews and Jewish complicity, as this shooter, in his bigoted mind, saw it, and bringing people, invaders into the country.
So, it certainly looks like his motivation is pretty clear.
TAPPER: The president condemn the shooting, and he condemned anti- Semitism in stark terms at an event in Indianapolis yesterday.
How do you feel about how the president has handled this specific tragedy? Are you satisfied? Has he done what he needs to do?
SCHIFF: The problem is not how he is handling the aftermath, although I certainly don't agree with his suggestion that this could have been avoided or mitigated if they'd had someone armed in the synagogue. That's not the answer.
The broader issue is what kind of climate are we creating in the country? This country is filled with amazing, beautiful, wonderful people who came here, many of them attracted by the idea this was a land of opportunity, no matter your religion, your ethnic origin, your color. That ideas being tested. by those who are preaching hatred and division. And we have to overcome that. And I think the president has a pivotal role there. No one sets the tone more than the president of the United States.
And the tone that he sets is one of division, often one of hatred, sometimes one of incitement to violence against journalists. And there's no escaping our collective responsibility.
But there's no escaping the tone that he sets for the country. The Constitution contemplates a president that tries to make us a more perfect union. And the president has his own constitution in here that doesn't allow him to do that. And that's not going to change.
I think it's going to fall on all the rest of us to try to make this a more perfect union, to bring people together, to accentuate our common humanity, and not these ancient hatreds, and not giving birth to new hatreds. That's going to fall on all of us.
And I think we're up to the challenge.
TAPPER: Now, that's a -- that's a general criticism of President Trump.
When it comes to the specifics of this anti-Semite, the shooter, his social media posts indicated that he was not a Trump supporter. He thought Trump was controlled by kikes, a derogatory term for Jews, that he was too controlled by Jews, that he wasn't legit.
And as long as the United States was infested with kikes, he wrote, MAGA would never happen.
So, the president had pointed to that and said, this guy was not a supporter of mine.
SCHIFF: You know, none of these acts of hatred are going to be identical.
You had, as you pointed out, someone go attempt to get into an African-American church, shoot people, and shot two African-Americans in a store instead.
You had these bombs that were sent around to the president's critics and opponents. And you had someone who went into this synagogue filled with the idea that Jews were behind this caravan, something that has been pushed out in social media.
And so you're never going to find all of these are exactly the same. But, nonetheless, what is the same is, are we part of the solution? Are we part of trying to make us a more perfect union? Are we trying to accentuate what brings us together, what unites us? Or are we preaching hatred and division?
And, honestly, I think this president's whole modus operandi is to divide us. He gets up in the morning with new and inventive ways to divide us. And it's not enough that, on the day of a tragedy, he says the right words, if every other day of the year he's saying things to bring us into conflict with each other.
TAPPER: George Soros is a billionaire financier. He's Jewish. He's a funder of a lot of progressive causes.
Somebody who's in the political arena certainly opens themselves up to criticism. Do you think all the criticism coming from the right about George Soros, all of it is anti-Semitic, some of it? How do you view it?
SCHIFF: Well, I don't know that I could say all of it. Some may have a -- have an issue with George Soros' Open Society organization or foundation.
But I think much of it, most of it...
TAPPER: We have to go to the press conference. We will come back to yes, Congressman Schiff.
(JOINED IN PROGRESS)
SCOTT BRADY, U.S. ATTORNEY: ... Sessions and the entire family of the United States Department of Justice, we want to offer our most heartfelt condolences and prayers to the victims of yesterday's senseless acts of hatred and violence, to the families and friends and to Pittsburgh's Jewish community and to the larger community of Pittsburgh.
The Jewish community of Pittsburgh is one that we, as Pittsburghers, treasure. It's an important part of the cultural and social identity of Pittsburgh. And so this was an attack upon our neighbors and upon our friends, and one that we felt very deeply.
The fact that this attack took place during a worship service makes it even more heinous. A place of worship is a sacred place. It's a place of peace and a place of grace.
It's a place where community comes together to celebrate that that they hold most dear and most sacred.
And this, of course, is our first freedom as a people. So, today, all over Pennsylvania, men and women in similar places of worship are in prayer for our Jewish brothers and sisters.
So, today, we stand together as a community, a community that rejects hatred and violence, a community where neighbors respect neighbors, where we embrace our religious diversity and we celebrate our differences.
And, together, we mourn those whose lives were lost, and we begin the healing process.
I want to commend the courageous police officers and SWAT teams who responded to the scene. They are truly heroes, who, without hesitation, without concern for their own safety, ran toward gunfire to protect innocent victims.
By confronting and neutralizing Bowers, they prevented additional loss of life.
So, a word about the charges. Last night, my office filed federal charges against the defendant, Robert Bowers. The complaint alleges that, on Saturday, October 27, at approximately 9:50 a.m., Robert Bowers entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighborhood.
At that time, members of the Tree of Life Synagogue were engaged in religious services and worship. Bowers was armed with multiple weapons. He had three Glock .357 handguns and an AR-15 assault rifle.
Inside the synagogue, Bowers shot and killed 11 individuals and wounded two others. Police officers and SWAT teams responded quickly to the scene, and Bowers shot at them. Ultimately, four police officers were injured, and three of them were shot by Bowers.
During the course of his deadly assault on the people of the synagogue, Bowers made statements about genocide and his desire to kill Jewish people.
After a standoff with police, Bowers eventually surrendered and remains in federal custody today. So, our complaint charges Bowers with 29 separate federal crimes. There are 11 counts of murdering victims who were exercising their religious beliefs. There are 11 counts of using a firearm to commit murder.
And each of these counts is punishable by death. The final seven counts are the harm inflicted by Bowers upon the brave police officers who, in trying to stop Bowers' rampage, put their own lives in danger.
Three of these brave men were shot by Bowers. So, Bowers is scheduled to make his initial appearance before a federal magistrate judge on Monday, October 29, at 1:30 p.m.
So, moving forward, the investigation is under way, and our work will continue. Know that we will spare no effort or resource in insuring that the defendant is held fully accountable for his unspeakable and hateful crimes.
We would ask the public and the media to have patience with us as we conduct this investigation and understand that there are things that we cannot share at times during the course of the investigation.
At the conclusion of our remarks, we will be happy to take questions.
Now you will hear from Special Agent in charge of the Pittsburgh Field Bureau, Robert Jones.
JONES: Thank you, Scott.
Last night at approximately 9:00 p.m., Robert Bowers was formally taken into federal custody, following the issuance of an arrest warrant by a federal magistrate judge here in the Western District of Pennsylvania. He is presently still in the hospital following surgery, and under guard.
At this point, we have nothing to indicate that Bowers had accomplices. But, again, we are in the early stages of this investigation.
Our hearts continue to go out to the families of the victims of the Jewish community. Here in Pittsburgh last evening, after some difficult work by the Medical Examiner's Office, all 11 victims were positively identified and next of kin notification took place.
As of 6:00 a.m. this morning, all of the victims had been taken from the Education Center to the Medical Examiner's Office.
I want to personally thank the leadership of the Jewish Community Center and the rabbis of the three congregations located at the facility for their patience and the patience of the families as we worked through the night to identify and remove the victims this morning.
This is a large, complex crime scene. And much work remains to be done. At present, FBI evidence teams from Baltimore, Washington and Newark are here to augment Pittsburgh. And we estimate that the crime scene may take up to a week to process.
As reported already, we have conducted a search at the subject's house and Baldwin. And a search of his vehicle will take place this morning. I can't comment on what was found in those searches.
We continue to conduct interviews, scrub social media, review possible surveillance camera video, and exploit digital media to determine how and why Bowers committed this terrible act.
I ask again that, if you have information that may help, please contact law enforcement.
I would like to again to thank Chief Schubert of the Pittsburgh Police for the heroic actions of his officers. Had Bowers made it out of that facility, there is a strong possibility that additional violence would have occurred.
I also want to thank Wendell Hissrich and his team. They are a big part of the community that all law enforcement promises to protect and serve.
Thank you very much.
I will turn it over to Wendell.
WENDELL HISSRICH, PITTSBURGH PUBLIC SAFETY DIRECTOR: Good morning.
I would just like to take a few minutes and thank the outpouring of support that we have received over the last 24 hours.
The Jewish Community Center, the Red Cross, the Salvation Army, the various grief counselors, the Children's Institute, and the many other organizations and businesses that have -- provide food and logistics for the officers and for the victims.
As Mr. Jones mentioned, the area around Wilkins and Shady will remain closed, so that the forensic investigation of the crime scene can continue.
That area will probably remain closed for up to a week. Extra patrols have been assigned around various sensitive locations throughout the city of Pittsburgh, to include where the scheduled event will occur tonight.
In the next few minutes, the medical examiner will release the names of the deceased victims. I would personally ask that the media respect the privacy of the families of these victims.
I was there last night and witnessed the notifications being made to the families. It is a very difficult time for the families. And I ask you to give them some distance.
Finally, if you see a first-responder, whether it be a police officer, paramedic or firefighter, go up to them and say thank you for their work that they have done. The last 24 hours has been extremely stressful for them. And a word of thanks would go a long way.
At this time, I will turn it over to Pittsburgh Bureau of Police Chief Scott Schubert, who will give you an update on his officers.
SCOTT SCHUBERT, PITTSBURGH POLICE CHIEF: Good morning.
First and foremost, as everybody is saying, our heartfelt condolences to the victims and to their families and their friends.
And we have a strong relationship with the Jewish community in Pittsburgh. And I just want to tell them that we grieve with you, we support you, and we're here for you. And we will continue to work with you.
This is a tragic thing for everybody. And -- but it's something that makes Pittsburgh strong, is that we work together. So we're going to continue to do that.
I still want to praise you officers for what they did. I mean, they ran into danger. They ran into gunfire to help others. Some of that is training. Some of that is experience, but it's their inner core that wants them to help others, that wants to save lives. And they did that yesterday. So we want to praise them for that. The four officers that were injured, one was released yesterday. We're praying one will be released today. And then the other two have a little bit more that needs to be done.
And can't say enough for the medical staff at the hospitals for what they're doing for the officers. We have incredible hospitals in Pittsburgh, and they're doing a fantastic job with that.
Can't say enough for the interagency and interagency support. Western Pennsylvania is blessed to have so many law enforcement agencies that work together, that train together. And yesterday just showed how that works, city, county, state federal agencies working together, no egos, working together for what's right. And I can't thank them enough for that.
And just -- we're going to get through this, and we're going to continue on and show what Pittsburgh's made of. So thank you.
DR. KARL WILLIAMS, CHIEF MEDICAL EXAMINER, ALLEGHENY COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA: Good morning. I'm Dr. Karl Williams,. I'm the medical examiner, chief medical examiner of Allegheny County.
And, again, I want to reiterate what everybody has said so far, which is, we and my office extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to the families.
I met with them last night during the process of identification. And there's no words to express the sympathy that they need.
Yesterday evening, at the synagogue, we entered the synagogue and identified all 11 victims before they were removed and brought from the synagogue last night to my office.
We have been involved with the four rabbis from the synagogue and elsewhere. They have a continued presence at my office during the process.
I'm going to give you the names of the victims now. And these will be available to you afterwards.
Seventy-five-year-old Joyce Feinberg of Oakland, 65-year-old Richard Gotfried of Ross Township, 97-year-old Rose Malinger of Squirrel Hill, 66-year-old Jerry Rabinowitz of Edgewood, 59-year-old Cecil Rosenthal of Squirrel Hill, 54-year-old brother David Rosenthal. David and Cecil Rosenthal were brothers.
Eighty-four-year-old Bernice Simon of Wilkinsburg, 86-year-old Sylvan Simon of Wilkinsburg -- Bernice and Sylvan were husband and wife -- 71-year-old Daniel Stein of Squirrel Hill, 88-year-old Melvin Wax of Squirrel Hill, and 69-year-old Irving Youngner of Mount Washington.
Now, the bodies are currently at the Medical Examiner's Office. Autopsies have begun on those. We are doing everything in our power to complete the process in a way that honors both civil and religious law.
And cause and manner will be released to the media as they're determined. We have not established a time frame work for this. We're only the initial process of evaluating what will be required to do that.
And, finally, in talking with the families last night, they are in shock and grieving, as you can imagine. My colleagues and I join the authorities in asking for you please to be respectful of the needs of -- for the time and space as they deal with this tragedy.
Today and the coming weeks, they will need to know that Pittsburgh supports them and is lifting them up. Thank you.
JEFF FINKELSTEIN, PRESIDENT AND CEO, JEWISH FEDERATION OF GREATER PITTSBURGH: Hi, I'm Jeff Finkelstein. I'm the president and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh.
So, I have to begin by saying that I have seen this room a lot of times on TV. And I never thought I would be at this podium.
This is an awful, awful period for our Jewish community, and especially for the families who have been affected. And it's real once you hear the names.
We're going to do everything we can to help the families. We're in the process of doing that now. And we will be there for them and be there to help our Jewish community and the Pittsburgh region heal from this.
I want to echo a lot of the thanks and gratitude that people have already expressed to local law enforcement, to the FBI, to the DHS, the Salvation Army, the Red Cross, who have all been there with us yesterday at the JCC.
I want to thank my colleagues at the Jewish Community Center and Jewish Family and Children's Service especially for really stepping in to work with the families.
And we will -- we will definitely get -- we will get past this and be a strong Jewish community, like we have always been. Thank you.
I'm going to ask the mayor to come up now.
BILL PEDUTO (D), MAYOR OF PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA: Pittsburgh's a strong town. We are a resilient city.
We have been knocked down, and we have found ways to stand back up. And we have always done it in one way, by working together.
To the victims' families, to the victims' friends, we are here as a community of one for you. We will be here to help you through this horrific episode.
We will get through this darkest day of Pittsburgh's history by working together.
Squirrel Hill is the most diverse neighborhood in all of Western Pennsylvania. People choose to live there because of the diversity of the community. The Jewish community is the backbone.
It is part of the fabric of Pittsburgh. And we will be there in all communities to support our friends in the Jewish community.
We, as I stated, have been knocked down before, but we have always been able to stand back up, because we work together.
And I have to take a moment to thank those that spoke earlier. The effort that was put in across multi-jurisdictions, from the federal to the state, to the county, to the local, was something that we should all be proud of.
The fact that we were able to work together as one community, suburban medics coming in voluntarily to take on different areas of our city, because all of our medics were at the scene, our medics deciding on their day off to voluntarily come in to fill seven additional ambulances to back up our officers.
And the officers who came from surrounding counties. The federal agents and the state troopers and the county officers all working together in order to be able to make sure an episode that will forever go down in the history of this city as one of the worst moments that we have experienced was able to be lessened because of that coordination.
And to those that are standing behind me who spoke early -- earlier, the professionalism that was exemplified through their leadership was something that we needed in our darkest time.
To our officers who are in the hospital and to the one officer who has been discharged, the thanks of an entire city go to them. Their sacrifice and there knowing of the danger that they put themselves in, in order to be able to protect others is something, when they put on that uniform, that we should understand the sacrifice that they make.
And to their family members, this city will be behind and there to support you in anything that you may need.
And, finally, to those that are not familiar with Pittsburgh, to those who have given their words of not only confidence, but support to Pittsburgh from around the world, around this nation and around the state, thank you.
We know that we as a society are better than this. We know that hatred will never win out, that those that try to divide us because of the way that we pray or where our families are from around the world will lose.
And, in Pittsburgh, we're pragmatic and we find solutions to problems. We will not try to rationalize irrational behavior. We will not try to figure out ways in order to lessen the degree of crimes such as this. We will work to eradicate it.
We will work to eradicate it from our city, from our nation, and our world. Hatred will not have a place anywhere. And we will work locally to make those changes happen.
And we will work with partners around this country and around this world to make sure that it ends.
I want to thank again all of those in this room, the elected officials who are gathered, those that have worked on the front line of public safety, those that worked within public works and other parts of government in order to be able to assure the safety of our people.
And we will open it up to questions at this time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir?
QUESTION: ... officer injured? Three were injured by the suspect.
JONES: I think it was either flying glass or a bullet fragment that ricocheted off something.
QUESTION: Is there any indication that the alleged shooter had cased out the synagogue or had any familiarity with it before Saturday?
JONES: We don't have any information on that at this point.
QUESTION: Was the weapon used in the shooting the AR-15?
JONES: All -- all the weapons he brought into the facility with him were used.
QUESTION: Scott, a lot of people have asked if this is a case of domestic terrorism. Can you speak to that?
BRADY: We are treating this as a hate crime.
As Special Agent in Charge Jones said, there's no indication that he's working with anyone else. And so we have charged it and are treating it as a hate crime, but continue to investigate.
QUESTION: And just to elaborate, the distinction of domestic terrorism would be to involve what?
BRADY: The distinction between a hate crime and domestic terrorism is, a hate crime is where an individual is animated by a hatred or certain animus towards a person of a certain ethnicity or religious faith.
And it becomes domestic terrorism where there is an ideology that that person is then also trying to propagate through violence.
And so we continue to see where that line is, but, for now, at this place in our investigation, we're treating it as a hate crime and charging it as such.
QUESTION: You said it was an AR-15. What were the other weapons?
JONES: He had three Glock -- three Glock handguns with him.
QUESTION: The first two officers who confronted the suspect, could you clarify where that occurred? Was it outside the building?
And have you determined whether or not the shooting inside had -- he had done the shooting he was going to do, or there was a potential for more shooting outside?
JONES: From what we know at this point, I know that he was exiting the building. I'm not sure if it was in a doorway or just inside or just outside.
And your second question again?
QUESTION: Was whether or not that there was an idea that he had -- that the shooting he had done inside was -- that he had concluded that or...
JONES: It appears at this point that he had finished, and he was exiting the building.
QUESTION: And there was some reference to the possibility of additional shooting. Was that the idea that he had more ammunition, he was going somewhere else?
JONES: We don't know of any plans to conduct additional shootings. My comments were meant in this fashion. There would have been a violent encounter probably as he left at some point. That's what I mean by additional acts of violence.
QUESTION: What's the estimate on how many people were inside the synagogue at the time? And did anyone try to fight back?
JONES: Don't know that at this time.
QUESTION: Do you know what was going on inside the synagogue at the time, what kind of ceremony or...
FINKELSTEIN: I actually don't know the specifics. There are three congregations that meet in the same building. So I'm assuming all three were holding services. But I actually don't know for sure.
QUESTION: And do we know which community? WAS this one specific congregation, the victims?
FINKELSTEIN: No, I think they come from -- I think, actually, from what I know, they come from all three.
QUESTION: So he moved throughout the building, because they were holding services in different places in the temple, right?
JONES: I don't know his motivation of where he moved and why, but, as has been said, he moved through the building, and there were three separate congregations conducting services.
QUESTION: So, the victims were (OFF-MIKE)
QUESTION: How long did this last? How long between the time he entered and the time he -- police engaged him outside?
JONES: We're estimating at this point 20 minutes or so, but we don't know that for sure.
QUESTION: That's 20 minutes, period, between the police shoot-out and the initial (OFF-MIKE)
JONES: All I can tell you at this point is that the initial shots fired comments were at 9:45. We know that the EMS call went out at 9:54, and that the officer engaged him at some point after that. So, that's a very rough estimate at this point.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) why he went into this synagogue?
JONES: I don't know why he picked this particular synagogue.
QUESTION: Can you elaborate at all on the shooter's condition at this point?
JONES: Do you know?
HISSRICH: He's still at -- he remains in fair condition at Allegheny General Hospital with multiple gunshot wounds.
QUESTION: Will the families be able to bury the dead within 24 hours, as is customary by Jewish law, or will the investigation delay that?
WILLIAMS: We have representatives, rabbis at the office. We're doing everything we can to balance, as I say, what we need to do as a criminal investigation with the needs of the families.
So they're -- we're just in the initial stages of processing the bodies, with knowing -- we will make sure that we can do everything we can to make sure that we can release the bodies in the shortest possible time frame, making sure that we get the information we need to carry on the criminal investigation.
QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) today?
WILLIAMS: Today, no. We hope to release the bodies -- some of the bodies will be released today. How many, I'm not sure.
QUESTION: Were shots fired at all three services, and do you have any handle on how many shots at all were fired?
WILLIAMS: Lots of shots were fired. There were casings everywhere, but no.
QUESTION: Were they in all three services, the three different services?
WILLIAMS: I will have to refer to the investigation that's going on. There were different activities going on in different parts of the building, so, yes.
QUESTION: Are investigators looking at any surveillance footage that may have been inside the synagogue
WILLIAMS: Pardon me?
QUESTION: Sorry. Any surveillance footage that's being reviewed right now?
JONES: We're attempting to see if there were surveillance cameras in position where we could footage. But we will look at the neighborhood and try to find everything we can.
QUESTION: Robert, was there anyone armed inside who may have tried to confront the gunman?
JONES: I have no information that that happened.
QUESTION: From what he said, were the -- most of the shots fired within common areas, or did he actually go into chapel sanctuaries?
JONES: All we can tell you right now is that there were three different locations inside the facility where we found deceased victims.
QUESTION: Do we know how he obtained his firearms, purchased them?
JONES: I don't -- I don't -- I personally don't have that information right now, but we're working closely with our ATF partners. And I think we have that.
QUESTION: Mr. Mayor, may I ask you a question? Mr. Mayor?
QUESTION: In learning a lesson from this horrid tragedy, is it not time for political classes to get together and talk about getting the gun out of American society?
PEDUTO: I have heard the president's comments of how we should arm guards in our synagogues, our churches, our mosques.
I have heard the conversation over the past year about how we should arm security guards in our schools.
We're dealing with irrational behavior. There is no way that you can rationalize a person walking into a synagogue during services and taking the lives of 11 people. We shouldn't be trying to find ways to minimize the dangers that are occur from irrational behavior. We should be working to eliminate irrational behavior in the
empowerment of people who would seek to cause this type of carnage from continuing.
I think the approach that we need to be looking at is how we take the guns, which is the common denominator of every mass shooting in America, out of the hands of those that are looking to express hatred through murder -- murder.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Last question.
QUESTION: Mr. Mayor...
QUESTION: Sorry. Go ahead.
QUESTION: Mr. Mayor, what do you think of the international attention that you're getting? And how do you think -- this is going to affect the midterm elections?
PEDUTO: I have no idea how it affects elections.
But I will say this, that the outpouring of love and support for Pittsburgh is incredibly appreciated during this time. And there is a commonality throughout the world of people who have had enough of this type of hate, based upon somebody's practice of religion or somebody's national origin.
There is an outpouring is that is being heard through the people of Pittsburgh right now of where people want to see society move towards. And it is not about finding ways to divide us. It is about finding ways that unite us through our commonality as humans.
Let this horrific episode be another mark in the march of humanity towards recognizing that we are all one.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.
TAPPER: All right, as the press conference ends, we are left with the words of the Pittsburgh Mayor, Bill Peduto, pleading for unity at this time of tragedy.
Two notes of news. We did hear from the FBI special agent in charge that they do not think that the shooter at the Tree of Life Synagogue had any accomplices. We're also told by the U.S. attorney in Allegheny County in the Western District of Pennsylvania that they are treating this as a hate crime.
So, that is the news out of that incident, out of that press conference, in addition to the list of names of the 11 victims.
I'm back here in Washington with Congressman Adam Schiff.
And, first of all, Congressman Schiff, is there anything that struck you from that? I will just share with you one thing that struck me is that one of the
victims was 97. I believe her name was Ruth Margoles (sic) or Ruth Margoles (sic). And she was 97 years old, which means that this is a woman who had memories -- she was born in the early '20s -- memories of the Holocaust.
And pretty amazing and horrific that she was killed for being a Jew right here in the United States.
REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D), CALIFORNIA: I was really moved by the mayor's concluding remarks, that they're hearing in Pittsburgh an outpouring of support from people all over the world that are putting forward a positive message, that we're all the same, that we're all one people, that we have got to put aside these -- these ancient hatreds and unite around what brings us together.
And it's encouraging that that is the dominant message coming out of this horror, this nightmare. And I think that's what's going to get us through this, this chapter of our history.
TAPPER: Well, let me ask you, because your fellow California Congressman Kevin McCarthy, the House majority leader, has been really criticized in the last few days for a tweet he put out earlier this week that said -- if we can put it up on the screen -- "We cannot allow Soros, Steyer, and Bloomberg to buy this election. Get out and vote Republican November 6. Make America great again."
In point of fact, Soros is Jewish, Bloomberg is Jewish, Tom Steyer's father was Jewish.
He has since deleted the tweet, but what did you make of that?
SCHIFF: I don't know what to make of that, except -- and you asked me about this before the news conference. You know, these attacks particularly on Soros are driven largely by his Jewish faith.
There are a lot of people are generous to the Democratic Party. The fact that he's become a symbol is not an accident. The fact that they're promulgating this falsehood that he's funding the caravan is an effort to give rebirth to this blood libel, that Jews are bringing impurity to the country, they're bringing other people to dilute the purity of the country.
It's an ancient hatred. And it's no accident that they have made George Soros the symbol of this. And you do see people, from the president on down, playing on this, candidates around the country playing on this.
There's a reason why anti-Semitism, according to ADL, we have seen 50 percent more acts of anti-Semitism last year than before, unprecedented expansion, explosion of anti-Semitism. Doesn't happen of its own.
It happens because it's fed. And what will be necessary to overcome it is what the mayor was talking about. And that is, these are still a minority of repugnant voices, and they have to be drowned out by our common goodness.
TAPPER: All right, Congressman Adam Schiff, thank you so much for your time on this horrible day. Appreciate it.
One of the most important aspects of this week has been President Trump and his response to all of the horrors, with questions about what kind of environment the president is fostering in the nation.
Unfortunately, the White House has all been abandoned the daily White House briefing. And the White House declined to provide us with a guest today.
So we turn to someone who knows President Trump well, who served at the White House, and is one of his most ardent political supporters, former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci.
He's out with a new book about President Trump called "Trump: The Blue-Collar President."
Anthony, it's good to see you, as always.
This has been a terrible week in the United States, with these attacks on Jewish Americans, black Americans, the bombs that were sent to prominent Democrats.
What is your take? Because I'm sure you hear it all the time. What do you hear -- what's your take when you -- when people say, President Trump has contributed to this polarized and hateful atmosphere, not that he's responsible for any of the individual actions, but that he has contributed to a really ugly period in this -- in this country?
ANTHONY SCARAMUCCI, FORMER WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: Well listen, I think there's problems on both sides.
But I have also been very clear on this. I have said it to the president and members of his staff. And I will continue to say it. There's no need to have a war with the media.
As far as I'm concerned, you can have an adversarial relationship, but we should be de-escalating this stuff. The president's got a great agenda. The economic situation is going very well. But you can see what happens when you're controlling the bully pulpit, and there's this level of bellicosity to the rhetoric.
And, again, the White House would say, well, listen, it's on both sides, and the president's just hitting back.
And I understand that. And I think a lot of those tactics helped him win the presidency. But he's now the leader of the free world. And he is the number one principal, responsible person in government for all people, Jake.
And just, as you know, he's the only person, the president's the only person that we all vote for. So, for me, I would love to see this stuff dialed back on both sides. But good leadership requires that somebody go first. And I would like it to be him.
I think he's a very good person. As you know, I have been a very a strong supporter of his. I'm not saying that people are perfect. He's certainly not. I especially am not. But I do think we could be doing better. And I would like to see that happen, frankly.
TAPPER: Yesterday, President Trump very clearly, very unequivocally condemned anti-Semitism, talked about this horrific attack in Pittsburgh.
But his critics point out that he has talked about -- quote -- "very fine people" marching alongside anti-Semites in Charlottesville. For days after I had asked him to disavow white nationalist David Duke, he declined. Ultimately, he did do it.
Not long ago, he met with Ted Nugent, who is anti-Semitic and posted anti-Semitic content on Facebook, in the Oval Office.
The president said yesterday that you wouldn't think anti-Semitic attacks are possible today. But there's a lot of anti-Semitism out there. There's a lot of bigotry of all kinds out there. And there has been a tolerance, at the very least, of it by the president and people in the White House.
SCARAMUCCI: Well, listen, the president's -- he has three Orthodox Jewish grandchildren.
You know, when I was in the White House, there's at least three or four offices that have mezuzahs on them. You know, I -- I have traveled to Israel four or five times since I left the White House.
It's not clear to me that people in Israel think that the president is anti-Semitic. If anything, they think he is very pro-Israel and has been incredibly supportive.
And one of the symbolic things that he did was move the embassy. So, I think there's a lot of substance in terms of the policy that's clearly not anti-Semitic. If anything, it's very pro-Israel and pro- Semitic, if you will.
But if you're making the point that there's some rhetoric and there's some equivocation on the rhetoric, certainly, we can go all the way back to Charlottesville, although I think that was a malaprop, frankly.
But I think, in general, we got to tone it down. And, you know, again, I don't want to repeat myself, but I think it's worth repeating. He's the president of the United States. He controls the news cycle and the bully pulpit. And he could do it.
And if he does it, I think he goes through 50 percent on his approval ratings. I think this sort of stuff, Jake, is a headwind on the president. It's probably a five- to seven-point headwind on the president in terms of where he could be in terms of the polls, based on what's going on in the economy and based on how people feel about the country right now, despite this sort of stuff.
But my heart goes out to those people. It's -- it's an unbelievable tragedy. And when you talk about the crime scene, and you think about each individual person, I mean it's just -- it's just -- we got to figure it out. We have to figure out a way to make this stop.
TAPPER: I want to ask you about the president's response to the to the bombs that were mailed. Thankfully, none of them went off. The FBI director said they were not hoax devices.
The president has attacked the media, has not said anything about CNN, even though we were mailed two of the devices. He hasn't called President Obama. He hasn't called former Secretary of State or President Clinton. He hasn't called any of the people who received these devices.
What's going on?
SCARAMUCCI: Well, listen, I can't -- I can't tell you what's going on, because I'm not inside the president's brain. And I'm certainly no longer inside the White House.
But I think what is going on is that there's -- there's a war declaration. And so, when he reads a statement like the one that came from Jeff Zucker, he gets upset. He will fire off a statement.
Jeff's statement, I thought, was fine. And, I mean, it wasn't derogatory or anything like that. He was just pointing out that the heat is too hot inside the system.
But the president probably took that as another salvo in the war that's going on between the White House and the media.
And so, for me, again, nobody's asking me inside the White House. But, if they did, I would say, listen, we have this huge opportunity. We're doing so well on so many different fronts, economically, and we're doing so well on the national security situation, very good progress happening on trade. We will likely get a trade deal done with China.
Come on, guys, we could do better than this cosmetically.
And just go back to Ronald Reagan what Mike Deaver did for Reagan and set the news cycle in a way that's way more positive, and you will see better results.
TAPPER: Just to say -- just to people who don't know, Jeff Zucker, the president of CNN, put out a statement, saying -- not blaming President Trump for the bombs, but saying that President Trump and the White House press secretary don't understand that their words matter.
This came in the context of, CNN had been sent a bomb. Sarah Sanders put out a statement expressing concern for all those that received the packages, but did not mention CNN in that initial statement.
And then the Trump campaign sent out an e-mail to supporters that attacked CNN. It was within this context that Jeff Zucker said, the president needs to understand that his words have meaning.
Anthony Scaramucci, we thank you for your time.
SCARAMUCCI: Just one second.
TAPPER: Yes, go ahead.
SCARAMUCCI: I think Jeff -- I just think Jeff's statement was totally fine.
I just think, because of the war declaration, that's why the shots are going both ways, Jake. That's -- that was my point.
TAPPER: OK. Well, I haven't declared war on anybody.
And, certainly, when Don Jr. and his family were sent a suspicious- looking powder, I publicly and privately expressed concern to Don Jr., because that's what human beings do.
SCARAMUCCI: Let's get it going in that direction. That would be my message to people.
TAPPER: Anthony Scaramucci...
SCARAMUCCI: I totally agree with you. Thank you.
TAPPER: ... good -- good luck with your book. And thank you so much for your time.
So let's talk about this all with our panel. And, Jonathan Weisman, let me start with you just because you have become something of an expert on anti-Semitism in the last couple of years and you've written a book about it.
What's your take on the ugly environment of -- that we've seen revealed in the last week?
JONATHAN WEISMAN, AUTHOR, "SEMITISM: BEING JEWISH IN AMERICA IN THE AGE OF TRUMP": Anthony Scaramucci just called -- talked about cosmetics.
How President Trump could burst through 50 percent if he could just deal with the cosmetics of this.
It's not cosmetic if you -- if words do matter and if you foment hate and if you actually -- you're -- the anti-Semitic or bigoted followers feel that you're on their side you are not just doing something cosmetic. You are actually doing something very real.
I think what's happening right now is a product of the last three years or more but is now bursting forward. I've been warning about this for months and now we're seeing it.
TAPPER: David, you're from Pittsburgh. DAVID URBAN, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes.
TAPPER: First of all, did you know anybody that was hurt?
URBAN: No. But, you know, in Pittsburgh I was talking to Nina about this. Nina is from Cleveland and Pittsburgh. It's not like Philly, Jake, where it's a big city. Pittsburgh is a very small city. Our heart goes out to a lot of those folks there.
And obviously the city is rallying around, but it's an incredible tragedy. It should never have occurred. To kind of push back on Jonathan said, echoed what Anthony said, you know, this president has -- to what you said you may feel Jonathan and you've got a different experience as I do as a Catholic guy but this president took incredible grief for standing with the people of Israel. Globally was condemned for standing with the people of Israel.
You know, Jonathan, you can't shake your head. He took --
WEISMAN: I will -- I will shake my head because the argument over whether the president stand with a government in Jerusalem or the people --
URBAN: No, not the government in Jerusalem but --
WEISMAN: -- or the Jewish people in the United States is a different argument.
URBAN: You think he's not standing for the people of Israel by moving --
TAPPER: But no one is talking about Israel.
WEISMAN: We're not talking about Israel.
URBAN: No but -- but -- OK. But the Jewish --
WEISMAN: You're always talking about Israel.
URBAN: OK. Diaspora at writ large. You don't think it matters? You don't it matters if he has grandchildren who are Jewish or that his cabinet is half Jewish?
Or as Anthony points out --
URBAN: OK. We have Mnuchin, you had Cohen, you've got other folks there. They've got mezuzahs in the White House. This is a guy who -- you could call him a lot of things but anti-Semite isn't one.
TAPPER: Nobody is calling him an anti-Semite.
URBAN: The crazy guy who did this was rallying against Trump for (INAUDIBLE).
TAPPER: That's right.
URBAN: I read a social media post.
TAPPER: Let's bring in Amanda.
AMANDA CARPENTER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I would say something that Donald Trump could do. He could start calling in the executives for these social media companies, allow the speech to thrive on their platforms.
CARPENTER: -- that could be done.
TAPPER: Gab -- just for people who don't know Gab is where this guy posted -- the shooter in Pittsburgh posted a lot of social media posts. Gab proclaims itself to be 100 percent free speech, a platform unlike Twitter where you can say and do things that you can't on Twitter. And that has meant in practicality that it is a place for a lot of white nationalist and Nazis --
CARPENTER: Here's my point.
TAPPER: I just want to explain.
CARPENTER: If you have platforms that tolerate hate speech, you get hate crimes. That's what happens.
TAPPER: You think that that environment fosters --
TAPPER: -- active (ph)?
CARPENTER: Absolutely. Absolutely.
TAPPER: What do you think?
WEISMAN: I think that there is virtually no way to suppress the internet. You know, after Charlottesville -- after Charlottesville a number of organizations stood up and said they were root out The Daily Stormer, the neo-Nazi Web site. And then for a time the neo-Nazi, "The Daily Stormer" disappeared. It went into kind of the dark Web and then it reappeared under DailyStomer.name. Basically we have to win the argument in the public sphere because we cannot suppress the --
TAPPER: I want to bring in Nina but before I do, Nina, I just want to -- the last post of the shooter was against a Jewish refugee agency that actually if you go on Twitter you'll find out they helped CBS anchor Bianna Golodryga and her family immigrate Julia Ioffe from GQ, the writer Gary Shteyngart. Like this is an organization that helps immigrants come into the country and settle and become successful in those three accounts.
Anyway. He wrote this is his final social media post. "HIAS" -- that's the name of the group -- "likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can't sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw you optics, I'm going in." That was his last Gab post.
NINA TURNER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes. I mean, words create worlds. I mean, I agree with Jonathan. We cannot -- there used to be a saying stick and stones may break my bones but words or names will never hurt me. No. Words create worlds.
And not that the president is responsible for any individual's reaction or actions, but he is responsible for the type of climate that he has created. Since he started running for president to this very point and when Scaramucci said, you know, the president is not perfect. Well, you know what? None of us are perfect.
We're not looking for perfection but we are looking for decency. And that is what this president fails to exhibit time and time again. He'll say one thing when it's written for him all nice and neat by his staff, but then when he gets into these rallies his true nature comes out.
So he does have to take some responsibility for the type of racist bio climate that we find ourselves in which, Jake, is not new.
This is -- you hear me say this all the time. This is in the DNA of America. So I'm surprised that people are surprised.
What is happening is that what is in our root as a country is bubbling up now, and that's why people are surprised. Every generation we have to be fighting to eradicate racism and bigotry.
URBAN: So, Jake, to address Amanda's -- I want to go back to what Amanda said, right, I get approached in airports and other places the Trump supporters have voiced the president and most people come up to me and say, I don't agree with the president. But you do a fair job of (INAUDIBLE) of telling the X, Y, and Z why you don't. Very few people come up to me. None the day that come up and yelled and spit vitriol like I get in Twitter, right?
URBAN: You're faceless. My point is when you're faceless and you're anonymous and you're sitting in your home in some remote place in America it's very easy to spit hatred and --
TAPPER: That's the internet.
URBAN: Yes. But it's the internet. But my point is that that vitriol -- I'm sorry, Nina -- that that vitriol build upon vitriol and allows people to think, well, it's OK for me to do that.
This is kind of like the broken window of theory of policing. If we don't push back on the small broken windows that occur in the internet and that allows bigger crimes to occur like this.
If we don't push back and I know you (INAUDIBLE) agree for this by saying, if you're pounding on Mitch McConnell's table in a restaurant you got to say no to that. Because it allows -- it gets grows and grows and it will allows people to be more and more hateful. You've got to push back at every level.
CARPENTER: I think we forget it was only five days ago that Trump said I am a nationalist. And he can pretend he doesn't know there's a national conversation about white nationalism.
He is playing with fire. Yes.
CARPENTER: Yes. I want social media to be cleaned up so people are responsible but I want the president also to be responsible.
URBAN: The president spent the whole day trying to clean it up without (ph) a statement.
TAPPER: So, Jonathan, I know -- I know something that happened during the campaign that you thought was really interesting as somebody -- something about a scholar of anti-Semitism and dog whistles and the rest, happened right here on CNN when President Trump talked to Wolf Blitzer.
Now this is after Julia Ioffe who I mentioned just a second ago had written a profile of Melania Trump and it wasn't a nasty profile. It wasn't a particularly friendly profile it was just a profile. It was a journalistic profile, after which Julia's -- you know, Julia's Jewish and she was targeted with a whole bunch of very nasty anti- Semitic imagery about, you know, putting her in ovens and the like. Wolf Blitzer asked then candidate Donald Trump about this. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: These anti-Semitics death threats?
TRUMP: Oh, I don't know about that. I don't know anything about that.
BLITZER: But your message to the --
TRUMP: You mean fans of mine?
BLITZER: Supposed fans of your posting these very angry -- TRUMP: I don't know. I know nothing about it. You'll have to talk
to them about it.
BLITZER: But your message to these fans is --
TRUMP: I don't have a message to the fans.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TAPPER: Why do you think that's important?
WEISMAN: I think that's important because time and time again when the president has been given an opportunity to stand up forthrightly and condemn the hatred around him he has shown dissidence, reluctance or that kind of thing, that it's not my fault.
You know, at the same time Melania Trump was confronted of about Julia Ioffe's profile and the absolute anti-Semitic hate that can rain down on Julia, and her response was Julia provoked it. That is not standing up for the things that we like to believe America is about, which is pluralism, democracy, love thy neighbor. And he has gotten the chance so many times and so many times he has just let it slip by.
TURNER: And the fact that he has, you know, Jewish folks in his family, again as Scaramucci brought up, that's just like saying, you know, I'm married to a black person so that makes me less of racist --
WEISMAN: Some of my best friends are Jewish.
TURNER: Right. Or some of my best friends are Jewish or Hispanic or indigenous. You know, what is in this man's heart, i.e. the president, comes out time and time again when he doesn't have a script in front of him and that is what we are dealing with.
We are in a moment of transcendence in this country. And either we can continue to work to create a more perfect union which we have to do every generation or we can regress. And I see regress --
URBAN: Look, I don't believe it. I don't believe the president loathes his Jewish grandchildren.
TURNER: No, no. I did not say that.
TURNER: Don't say that. I didn't say that.
TAPPER: No one thinks that.
TURNER: I did not say that. URBAN: OK. Nina, I don't believe the president loathes --
TURNER: No. I did not say that.
URBAN: No, no. OK. I'm not trying to characterize that.
URBAN: I don't believe the president loathes Jewish-Americans or --
URBAN: Listen, Jonathan -- or I don't believe the president supports anti-Semites, anti-Semitism.
TAPPER: What do you -- what are you actually accusing the president of because David just specifically pressed (ph) that?
WEISMAN: The argument is not over what is in President Trump's mind. We're not calling him a racist, we're not calling him anti-Semite. We don't know.
What I'm saying is the president has shown a reluctance time and time again to shun his supporters. And his supporters, as Andrew Gillum said, I'm not calling you a racist, I'm just saying the racists think you're a racist.
TURNER: That's right.
WEISMAN: This is case where the anti-Semites believe that he is on their side and he hasn't pushed back enough to say, I am not with you.
URBAN: -- say today? He said -- yesterday --
CARPENTER: He didn't have a clear answer about David Duke when he was asked.
CARPENTER: He has not tossed around words like nationalism when we know what his supporters in the dark corners of the internet take from it.
URBAN: Because the president should --
CARPENTER: He has to clean that up.
URBAN: Listen, everybody --
CARPENTER: And if he doesn't he is allowing it to continue. URBAN: The president missed an opportunity right there to get back in
the day to say that corrective. He should correct it. The president should stand up, like he did yesterday and condemn this. And condemn the actions.
WEISMAN: You know that the last -- that last advertisement of President Trump's campaign for president talked about global special interests as the Jewish faces of Janet Yellin, George Soros and Lloyd Blankfein went by.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: I think we have that --
WEISMAN: Went by. I mean, if that's not a dog whistle that's a vuvuzela or something like that.
TAPPER: Let me -- do we -- control room, do you have that element ready? Because we talked about this. OK. So this was the last TV ad that President Trump and his campaign ran right before the election. And as Jonathan Weisman accurately points out, it uses the imagery of three individuals who are -- who are Jewish, Janet Yellin and the Fed chair, Lloyd Blankfein from Goldman Sachs, and George Soros who was a billionaire financier and funds a lot of liberal causes. Let's just take a little look at that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: For those who control the levers of power in Washington and for the global special interests, it's a global power structure that is responsible for the economic decisions that have robbed our working class, stripped our country of its wealth and put that money into the pockets of a handful of large corporations and political entities.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WEISMAN: I mean, that sends a shiver down my spine. And you know what, we can dismiss it but it sends a shiver down my spine.
URBAN: I'm not going to dismiss it. I'll say this. I'm going to try to explain it perhaps, right? So Goldman Sachs, there's an ad for Wall Street. Janet Yellin, chairman of the Fed. George Soros, billionaire left-wing guy. That's how I see the ad.
CARPENTER: But there's language --
WEISMAN: It didn't have Sheldon Adelson, billionaire right-wing.
URBAN: It's an ad against Democrats. It's not an ad against Republicans.
TAPPER: One at a time.
WEISMAN: We can deny it, we can deny it, but the fact is there's a pattern here.
URBAN: We all agree about one thing, right, it's a terrible thing. This is all terrible. We still haven't discussed and we should. The mental health crisis that's raging in America, right, because none of these folks are healthy people who did these acts, right? None of these people, I mean, underlying they're crazy.
TAPPER: The question is whether or not any of them are being juiced up by what they're hearing from their leader.
URBAN: That's not --
CARPENTER: Can I say something? The man that constructed the pipe bombs is in control of his faculties enough to construct 12 pipe bombs and send out. When the president uses language like the press is the enemy of the people there are people in America who will take that as --
URBAN: Amanda, every -- wait. Everybody said -- let me address that. Everybody who worked with that guy said he was insane.
URBAN: This is another thing. See something, say something. The guy is driving around with a van that looks like, that's shouting I'm crazy, I need to be institutionalized, and nobody -- you know what his boss said? His boss said he was crazy but you know what, he showed up for work so I --
NINA TURNER, PRESIDENT, OUR REVOLUTION: Mental health crisis is real.
TAPPER: Sure. Absolutely.
TURNER: But all of this should not be laid at the feet of -- you know, those people in the left.
URBAN: That's part of it.
TURNER: But still --
TAPPER: There are a lot of people -- let us say this. There are most people who struggle with mental issues.
TAPPER: Are not violent, do not do anything violent and it's wrong to stigmatize them. I'm sure we agree with that. OK.
TURNER: do agree with that. And then, you know what, this politics, people should do everything to win but not anything to win. And we are living in a climate right now.
URBAN: I agree with that. I agree. TURNER: Where too many politicians president trump included are doing
anything to win. And they don't care about the fallout. That happens.
URBAN: But no Democrats, Nina?
TURNER: I said --
URBAN: Everyone has got to disarm. Everybody has got to disarm.
TURNER: Listen, I just said far too many. But he's the president of the United States.
TAPPER: Can we talk about the ad for one second? Do you really think that it's just a coincidence that the three symbols of globalism and special interests, screwing the workingman and woman are Jewish? Do you really think that's just a coincidence?
URBAN: Jake, I said I was explaining the ad the way -- I was trying to explain it. I didn't it -- I mean, I saw it. I didn't produce it. I don't know what's behind the thinking of it. I'm just giving you another opinion on the ad, OK? They don't know -- listen. I don't know who's delivered it.
CARPENTER: No, it's clear --
URBAN: I didn't put the ad together.
CARPENTER: -- people who follow white nationalist language that they borrowed language from that cesspool. And you see it bubbling up much more than you think.
URBAN: I don't know the ad --
CARPENTER: You see it bubbling up on FOX News occasionally. All these things --
TAPPER: Last night.
URBAN: I'm not here to --
TAPPER: Last night on FOX Business.
URBAN: I'm not here to defend FOX News. You're asking about the ad.
CARPENTER: Yes, but --
TAPPER: Right. He's trying to explain --
URBAN: I'm just trying to explain.
(CROSSTALK) TAPPER: But you think there's a potentially innocent explanation that they're just picking people?
URBAN: Listen, I do -- I think there -- I do. I absolutely do.
TURNER: It's deliberate. I mean, these things, there's a whole science to this, Jake. Let's not delude ourselves. That ad was deliberate.
URBAN: Frank Luntz, man.
TURNER: It was deliberate.
TAPPER: Well, we don't know that Frank Luntz -- Frank Luntz is Jewish. I don't think --
URBAN: I know, but that's my point. That's the point.
TAPPER: As a scholar of this, and I'm not making light of that.
[10:05:03] You wrote a whole book about this. Do you think it's possible that it's a coincidence that those three individuals other than Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, that those are the individuals that the ad singles out are Jewish? In the same way that Kevin McCarthy tweet about Bloomberg and Steyer and Soros is a coincidence. He just happened to mention two people who are Jewish and one with a Jewish father.
WEISMAN: Well, let me ask you this, I mean, Sheldon Adelson who has -- is also Jewish and is also very rich and is also funding a political campaign, the Republican campaign, has failed to show up in any of this. I haven't seen anybody talking about -- I haven't seen Democrats railing against Sheldon Adelson for spending $50 million, $60 million to re-elect the Republican conference.
I'm sorry, I actually -- if you look back at the campaign, the 2016 campaign, a number of times -- I don't know who it is -- a number of times we saw very strong evidence that somebody in that campaign was swimming in the alt-right world. When that picture came up of Hillary Clinton on top of the Jewish star with money --
TAPPER: I think we have that element, too. Let's put that up, Jonathan Weisman, so people know what they're talking about. It was a tweet that the president sent out, and it had -- it was actually that meme was actually taken from an anti-Semitic Web site.
WEISMAN: Exactly. Somebody -- that did not --
URBAN: It was Dan Scavino who said he did it.
TURNER: It was not by accident.
CARPENTER: Well, his campaign manager wanted to be a platform for the alt-right with Breitbart News. And so --
TAPPER: There it is. So there it is. On the left is the Trump tweet and it's about Goldman Sachs and money and it's a Jewish star, and then they re-did it with a circle. And then the initial explanation from the Trump campaign was that the Jewish star was a sheriff's star.
WEISMAN: Except it came out of an anti-Semitic Web site. They are trolling around looking for these images. You know what, many people would see that and they're not -- and they wouldn't understand it, but if you're in that world, if you're in the world of the alt-right world, and you see that, you know exactly where that came from.
TAPPER: And that's the argument with it, the Yellin-Blankfein-Soros imagery.
URBAN: Listen, I understand your point. I will tell you at that point in time Dan Scavino said he did it. Dan Scavino said he cut and pasted it from -- not from an alt-right Web site but from a Microsoft whatever, and I can't tell you. We can go back and pull the print from it, but Dan Scavino owned up to it, it wasn't some grand conspiracy that he put it up, and admitted to it. So --
WEISMAN: Is Dan Scavino still in the White House?
URBAN: Yes, he is. So you're accusing Dan Scavino of being anti- Semitic?
WEISMAN: Yes, I am.
URBAN: OK. So let him push back.
TAPPER: You are a Republican, you're not a Trump supporter, obviously, but you're a Republican. When you see all of these things and David doing his level best to try to explain this is where this happened, this is how this happened, none of it came from David, but he's trying to give the Trump point of view this is not what the intention was, I'm sure. Do you buy it? It's not David per se --
CARPENTER: I don't think all this is a coincidence. I know for sure that President Trump likes to stoke controversy. And he really doesn't have any moral objection to going to this place. He doesn't mind if we fight about this. How many times? Both times after Charlottesville? He doesn't mind. And so my question is I'm no longer looking to President Trump to do the right thing.
I hate after all these tragedies we look to see what the president says because he's never going to soothe the nation. I'm looking for other people to step up and have a better message. I'm looking for --
TAPPER: Is there anyone?
CARPENTER: I'm looking. I'm looking. Isn't everyone looking? Are we just going to let Donald Trump dominate the conversation in the worst way?
TAPPER: Well, but you're a Republican. Are there other Republican senators that you find say the right there? You used to work for Ted Cruz. Does Ted Cruz say the right thing? Is there anyone you're seeing fill the breach?
CARPENTER: No, I'm looking, and it baffles me why no one is stepping up to that plate.
TURNER: I know why not.
CARPENTER: Because there is a vacuum.
TURNER: This is all politics.
URBAN: The president said yesterday --
TAPPER: Just let Nina finish.
URBAN: I'm sorry. Sorry.
TAPPER: We're all passionate here. Go ahead.
TURNER: I mean, it's just politics. Again, it goes back to the point doing everything to win or anything to win. There is a big difference. And so most of these folks who are in these offices all they care about is their election. They don't want to step on their so-called voters by chastising people and coming out strong against racism and bigotry. We need that kind of leadership at all times. And you know what, if they lose an election over it, so be it, by standing up and doing the right thing.
URBAN: Look, I agree. There's no place for it in the public square. It should be widely condemned. Listen, why is hate so prevalent? I mean, to Jonathan's point, why is it so prevalent? Where did it start? How does it stop? How do we get back -- Stephen Carter, professor at Yale, wrote a great book about civility, right? How do we get back to civility in the public square? How does that happen?
CARPENTER: Well, I think social media plays a huge role.
URBAN: I agree.
CARPENTER: And as long as there are companies that don't mind making money off hate speech it will continue. And that's why someone would do something and hold them accountable.
URBAN: And Governor Schwarzenegger said this, too, people look at this as kind of simplistic but redistricting every 10 years makes seats safer and safer and let congressman to be crazier.
URBAN: And crazier and say more and more things that are not in mainstream.
[10:10:03] We draw these districts that are very left and very right and no check on anything. TAPPER: All the hate that we've seen in terms of the three incidents
we've talked about this week were from the right, far, far right. But Jonathan, you know, that there's anti-Semitism and bigotry on the left as well. And we see it, and I'm not equating the two, and the moral equivalence police out there, I'm not saying it's the same thing. But Lou Farrakhan is out there calling Jews termites and preaching hatred, and he is somebody who recently was on stage with several former presidents at a funeral.
WEISMAN: That was shocking. I mean, I -- I go around the country talking about this. And I talk about Louis Farrakhan as bigoted and as horrific as anything you would see. What comes out of his mouth is as awful as anything you would hear coming out of David Duke's mouth.
TAPPER: It's pretty much the same. Yes.
WEISMAN: It's pretty much the same. But I'd like to say look, Farrakhan's power kind of peaked in 1995 with the Million Mile March and has gone downhill. That line that I've used was so undermined by that image at Aretha Franklin's funeral of Bill Clinton sitting next to Louis Farrakhan. It made me sick. It really did. And I think that look, the left needs to be speaking out as forthrightly as the right. No question, no question.
TAPPER: Again I'm not saying it's the same thing, but -- I'm not saying it's the same thing but how -- why would we tolerate it on either side?
TURNER: Look, it -- it shouldn't be. But in terms of Aretha Franklin's funeral I don't know who's on the invitation list. You know, so somebody being at Aretha Franklin's funeral is not the equivalent at all about what's going on here.
TAPPER: Not at all.
TURNER: No, and I know you're not saying that but --
TAPPER: We all agree with that.
TURNER: This is making me feel some kind of way. I will say this that both the -- because we continue to see these things through left and right, let's just see it through the lens of humanity.
TAPPER: Exactly. Exactly.
TURNER: That every -- this is all about how strong of a Democrat are you or how strong of a Republican are you, when it should be about how strong of a person are you to stand up for humanity?
TAPPER: Preach. I'm saying --
TURNER: That's what this is about.
TAPPER: Exactly. Exactly. WEISMAN: Nina is right. It is amazing in my travels what -- how I
see bigotry itself has become a partisan issue.
TURNER: Yes. It's a partisan issue.
WEISMAN: That if you stand up against bigotry somehow you're a left- wing lunatic. It's crazy. It's crazy. And --
TAPPER: Or a right-wing lunatic.
TURNER: Because I will say in my travels, too, I've seen this kind of stuff at the hands of Democrats. I mean, there's a candidate right now, (INAUDIBLE), who's running in California where we know two Democrats can go head to head, where images of monkeys are coming out against her at the hands of supporters of her opponent who's a Democrat. So nobody has a premium on whether they can be racist or bigoted. But what we do have to do is stop seeing everything through the lens of whether you're Republican or Democrat and see it through the lens of what kind of country we want to be.
URBAN: And again --
TURNER: What kind of people we want to be.
TAPPER: A hundred percent.
URBAN: And propagated and stoked by faceless, nameless folks on social media. Right? Everybody gets played.
TAPPER: So on that note of agreement, I'll -- you know, it's tough to have these conversations.
URBAN: We do, but, Jake --
TURNER: But I'm glad that we are.
URBAN: To this show's credit, you know, Nina and I talk, we go, we leave. We're friends --
TAPPER: I just want to say --
URBAN: And so unlike the discourse that's being had on social media where people get to shout down people, call them horrific names.
TAPPER: I know.
URBAN: And they vanish into the --
TAPPER: So none of us are going to look at our social media accounts for the next two days.
TURNER: Not today.
TAPPER: After this conversation. But thanks one and all for being here, for speaking from the hearts. We appreciate it. This massacre took place in Squirrel Hill which was literally,
literally Mr. Roger's neighborhood. So I want to end the show today with some wise words from the American icon about how we can cope with tragedy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FRED ROGERS, "MISTER ROGERS' NEIGHBORHOOD": When I was a little boy and something bad happened in the news my mother would tell me to look for the helpers. You'll always find people helping, she'd say. And I'd found that that's true.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TAPPER: Look for the helpers. May that offer you some comfort and may the memories of those lost at the synagogue in Pittsburgh, may their memories be a blessing.
I'm Jake Tapper in Washington. "FAREED ZAKARIA GPS" is next.