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Interview with Ken Starr; McConnell to Introduce Short-Term Bill to Prevent Shutdown; Facebook Gave 3rd Parties Access to Users' Private Info; Show of Bipartisanship in D.C. over Criminal Justice Reform. Aired 1:30-2p ET
Aired December 19, 2018 - 13:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[13:30:00] BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN HOST: On his character? You talked about character.
KEN STARR, FORMER SPECIAL COUNSEL & FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: Oh, yes. No.
KEILAR: Does he have the character to be the leader of the free world?
STARR: I think that's a question that the American people will be asking themselves, including in this next year.
KEILAR: But do you ask yourself that? I understand with your closeness to the investigation with Bill Clinton. But you're an American. You make that assessment here with Bill and Hillary Clinton.
STARR: But I made that assessment, Brianna, 20 years after the fact when I'd had the opportunity to assess all the facts. And I think that's important. It's very easy to jump to a conclusion based upon this fact or that fact. But I do say this, a president needs to tell the truth about all matters, save for issues of national security. If there's questions of non-truth telling, I as a citizen view that as a very serious question for us all to evaluate.
KEILAR: We'll leave it at that with you, as we do evaluate that.
Ken Starr, thank you so much for being with us.
STARR: My pleasure, thank you.
KEILAR: We'll be right back.
[13:35:48] KEILAR: Right now, the Senate resolution vote that would mean that it would fund the government through February 8th on a short-term basis.
CNN senior congressional correspondent, Manu Raju, is on the Hill following this for us.
What are you hearing? Because it feels like we've been all over the map recently.
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. We do expect the Senate to pass as soon as today, a measure to keep much of the chunk of the government open up until February 8. But both sides of the aisle, Republicans and Democrats, are disappointed in this result, knowing that they'll be back at it, fighting over the president's border wall, including Senator Richard Shelby, who acknowledged this is not a great way to end the year.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. RICHARD SHELBY, (R), ALABAMA: Not a good way, I thought. I thought we had a pretty good year on the approach with the government for the first time in years. We were able to fund most of the big stuff, 75 percent of the budget. We got close, real close, but not close enough to do the other, the stake in this. And we all learn something and I think we've got to work together.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
RAJU: Now, here in the House, there's still a push from some of the president's allies to potentially veto this short-term bill. Some of his conservative allies in the Freedom Caucus, expected to go to the floor tonight and demand full funding for that border wall. And while members expect the president to sign it, no one knows 100 percent for sure. So we'll just wait and see. But most expect the government to remain open after this passes and Congress ends the session in just a matter of hours -- Brianna?
KEILAR: We'll be watching. Manu, thank you.
A new report revealing Facebook gave third parties access to your private messages, and yet another blow to user's trust in the social media giant.
[13:42:17] KEILAR: A new assault on your privacy. The "New York Times" reporting Facebook gave quite unimaginable access to your private information to other tech companies after they said they were not. We're talking about companies like Microsoft, Netflix, Spotify, a number of others, Yahoo!.
This coming, this news, on the same day that the D.C. attorney general filed a lawsuit against Facebook over the sharing of users' personal information in relation to Cambridge Analytica during the 2016 election.
Joining me now to discuss this is Democratic Congressman Ro Khanna.
Sir, thank you so much for being with me.
It's so important to have you on because your district largely encompasses Silicon Valley. And with that in mind, what's your reaction to this story? REP. RO KHANNA, (D), CALIFORNIA: I was very disappointed and
concerned. On the face of it, it looks like Facebook has violated the FTC consent decree. They're basically providing information to third parties where third parties are reading personal information. This is just, frankly, appalling. It's why we need an Internet Bill of Rights. The two provisions of my Internet Bill of Rights say that before you can give information to a third party, you have to explicitly ask for a person's consent. That wasn't done. And people should have the right to know what happened to their data. That wasn't done.
KEILAR: I want to talk about your Internet Bill of Rights because that really is sort of your pet project. But the argument that Facebook is using here, which sounds very legalistic, is they say these companies, Amazon, Netflix, Spotify, some of these partners, they're essentially extensions of Facebook itself and, therefore, fits into the FTC agreement on data sharing. You clearly don't share that view. What do you think about that argument?
KHANNA: I don't think that's going to fly. I mean, what Facebook is arguing is that the original service agreement which you sign, gives them the right to share your information with all the third-party platforms. That's not how I read the FTC agreement. It would be one thing if they explicitly asked for consent before sharing information with Microsoft and Spotify. They didn't do that. The problem with the FTC, though, they don't have the people with these consents. Andrew Smith, the head of the Consumer Protection Bureau, used to represent Facebook. It is inflicted in enforcing these laws. One is to strengthen the FTC and make sure there's independence there.
KEILAR: You're in charge of the Internet Bill of Rights. You're trying to come up with ways to ensure that consumers of these Web sites can protect themselves. But when you have a Web site like Facebook, a giant like Facebook, that has the gal to make this argument, which almost, you almost wonder if it's good faith, how do you, as a member of Congress, as a body of Congress, deal with that? What can you do to combat that?
[13:45:14] KHANNA: We need stronger regulations. Part of the reason Facebook can try these legalistic arguments is there's not a clear --
KEILAR: What do those look like, I guess? Because it seems like Congress is so reticent to actually do something and they worry about how they thread the needle on this?
KHANNA: I think one law that would be so simple is to say before you can share information with a third party, you need explicitly a person's consent. It's not enough just to have them sign a user agreement when they sign up for your service. If you're on using Spotify or using Microsoft and logging in through those platforms, before Facebook can share that information, they should require your consent. Every single time. If we had a clear law like that, Facebook couldn't use legalese to avoid liability. The second thing we can make clear is, you should know what's
happening to your data. People didn't know that banks were reading their private messages or that other people had access to instant messages or sending on Facebook. You should be able to know exactly who has access to your data and what they're doing with it. Those two laws would go a long way to protecting people.
KEILAR: The bank, in that case, I should say, told the "New York Times" they weren't aware they had that ability. We have not independently checked that out. I don't know if the "New York Times" was able to confirm that, but that's what the bank said.
And Congressman Ro Khanna, really appreciate you being with us.
KHANNA: Thank you, Brianna.
KEILAR: We saw something we rarely see in Washington last night, bipartisanship. How this happened, next.
[13:51:14] KEILAR: A rare show of bipartisanship. The Senate voting to pass the most significant overhaul to the criminal justice system in decades. And now it heads to the House before reaching the president's desk.
CNN's Van Jones worked with President Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and went to the White House to sell the president on this bill.
Van, explain to us how the First Step Act works.
VAN JONES, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR & CNN HOST, "THE VAN JONES SHOW": It's a Christmas miracle. And 87 Senators -- you know, you can't get 87 Senators to vote to change the name of a post office. You got 87 of them coming together. Basically, what it does, 100 percent of the people who are locked up, if they act right and stay out of trouble can come bit earlier. Half of them, if they take classes and get job ready, can come home earlier. Job ready and prepared. Women can no longer be shackled when they're having babies. There's a lot of indignity against women, that goes away. And 100 percent of juveniles in the federal system cannot be in solitary confinement. The old crack cocaine disparity that Obama tried to fix and did a good job trying to fix was not fixed retroactively. This bill means people sitting in jail from old crack cocaine charges from years back cannot come home. I mean --
KEILAR: And there are crimes relative to other similar drugs that they're --
JONES: Exactly. People may not remember this but crack and cocaine are the same thing except the crack has baking soda. You put baking soda in it, you get 100 times more than if you just have powder cocaine. Obama fixed that to 18 to one, which was great, but it wasn't retroactive. This bill makes the fix retroactive. That's huge. Listen, what this shows -- the Clinton crime bill passed by 671 votes,
all Democrats. This 87 votes, both parties, moving in the opposite direction. It's the beginning of a new era of rethinking criminal justice.
KEILAR: It's really amazing. The Senators who did this, they got so many votes that they basically went through Mitch McConnell to do it. They just said we're taking our will to the Senate floor.
You had some very interesting help in this. I think that's so important and significant for why this is successful, Jared Kushner, Kim Kardashian.
JONES: Kim Kardashian was indispensable. Her passion for especially women who are locked up opened the door. She went to talk to Donald Trump and she got this conversation started. We would not be here without Kim Kardashian.
Jared Kushner's father went to prison. He was personally committed to making sure the prison system was changed.
You have grass-roots activists, people who themselves went to prison or had a family member who went to prison. And there was this sisterhood or fraternity of pain, people who have seen the prison system do terrible things to people who wanted to see something different. And it all came together.
And, remember, I hate to say this as a Democrat, but you've got a bunch of Republican governors from Texas to Georgia that have already implemented this stuff and brought the crime rate down and the prison population down. If we could just steal ideas from red states and give them to Donald Trump, and that's what happened.
KEILAR: How much does this impact you that you see this bipartisanship?
JONES: It's transforming to me as a person. I get a chance to work at CNN and I get a chance to see Republicans and Democrats every day. Most people don't. I've come to respect both sides. But watching people go through the process of trying to find agreement for people who probably are never going to give you a campaign donation, they in your state may not even be able to vote. Here's a population that doesn't have any political up side to helping and to have this many people come to help anyway is a Christmas holiday miracle.
[13:55:09] KEILAR: This is why these members of Congress are here, though, right, Van?
So it's great to see, Van Jones. Thank you so much.
JONES: Thank you.
KEILAR: A full and rapid withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria, according to the president, but as Donald Trump declares victory over ISIS, his own Defense Department is actually contradicting him.
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