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HALA GORANI TONIGHT
Stone Is Defiant and Vows to Fight Politically Motivated Charges; Valencia Has Interview with Roger Stone; Trump Speaking on U.S. Government Shutdown; Trump Announces Deal To End U.S. Government Shutdown; Roger Stone Indicted On Seven Charges In Russia Probe. Aired 2-3p ET
Aired January 25, 2019 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[14:00:00] HALA GORANI, CNN HOST: Hello and welcome. I'm Hala Gorani on this Friday. A lot of breaking news today. We begin with breaking news on
multiple fronts. It is an incredibly busy day and we want to get right to Washington where President Donald Trump is expected to make a major
statement on the government shutdown any time now. We are hearing that he'll announce a way forward on breaking the impasse with Congressional
Democrats over funding for his border wall. A short time ago, sources told CNN that negotiators are moving toward an agreement but have not received a
final sign-off from all sides. So, it appears as though we're nearing toward a deal. Some of the analysts who have spoken to CNN throughout
today have said that perhaps those images coming from out of LaGuardia of air traffic controllers having to take additional breaks because of the
strain the shutdown is putting on them, that that perhaps could have swayed the President -- could have changed the calculus a little bit when it comes
to the White House's negotiating position with Congressional Democrats and Republicans on the hill. Mr. Trump is set to make headlines on the very
same day that one of his long-time associates was indicted in the Russia investigation. Roger Stone walked out of a Florida courthouse. This was
his first appearance, with a smile. This all happened a short time ago. Flashing victory signs, ala Richard Nixon. The indictment is damning to
the Trump campaign, alleging that Stone was sharing information about WikiLeaks release of hacked e-mails with multiple campaign officials. And
it also alleges -- and this is perhaps -- this is perhaps the key line -- that a senior Trump campaign official was directed to contact Stone about
WikiLeaks. Now, as for Roger Stone, this is how he responded in Florida.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROGER STONE INDICTED BY THE SPECIAL COUNSEL: Thank you. Thank you very much.
PROTESTERS: Boo! Boo!
STONE: As I have always said, the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.
STONE: After a two-year inquisition, the charges today relate in no way to Russian collusion, WikiLeaks collaboration, or any other illegal act in
connection with the 2016 campaign. I am falsely accused of making false statements during my testimony to the House intelligence committee. That
is incorrect. Any error I made in my testimony would be --
PROTESTERS: Lock him up, lock him up.
STONE: -- immaterial and without intent. I find it disturbing that the special counsel's office released a press release prior to informing my
attorneys that I would be charged today.
PROTESTERS: Lock him up!
STONE: This morning at the crack of dawn, 29 FBI agents arrived at my home with 17 vehicles, with their lights flashing, when they could simply have
contacted my attorneys and I would have been more than willing to surrender voluntarily. They terrorized my wife, my dogs. I was taken to the FBI
facility. Although I must say the FBI agents were extraordinarily courteous. I will plead not guilty to these charges. I will defeat them
in court. I believe this is a politically motivated investigation. I am troubled by the political motivations of the prosecutors. And as I have
said previously, there is no circumstance whatsoever under which I will bear false witness against the President, nor will I make up lies to ease
the pressure on myself.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: All right. Roger Stone is saying, I'm not going to talk. I'm not going to testify against the President. We have reporters covering all of
these developments for us. Abby Philip and Stephen Collinson are live in Washington on what we are expecting from the President as we continue to
keep our eye on the Rose Garden. Nick Valencia is outside the courthouse where Roger Stone was indicted. You had the opportunity, Nick Valencia, in
Fort Lauderdale to ask Roger Stone a few questions. What did you ask and how did he respond?
NICK VALENCIA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hala, it was absolutely remarkable to see Roger Stone so defiant and in such good spirits. He was,
in fact, in a joking mood when I first approached him. I asked a variety of questions including what he thought about these charges he's facing, the
seriousness of them and what it was like when the FBI showed up at his residence earlier this morning.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VALENCIA: Mr. Stone, any comment for CNN?
STONE: Nice to see you guys at my house this morning.
VALENCIA: What do you say about the charges, Mr. Stone?
STONE: They're false and I will be completely vindicated.
VALENCIA: What was it like when the FBI showed up?
[14:05:00] PROTESTERS: Roger the traitor!
STONE: Not surprising.
VALENCIA: The indictment says the you were coordinating with senior Trump officials, campaign officials. Who were the officials?
VALENCIA: No indication who those officials were, Mr. Stone?
STONE: They don't exist.
VALENCIA: Anything you would like to say to clear the record?
STONE: I think I've been clear. Tune in to the shows tonight. You will see. I support the President. I've made my statement. I have nothing
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VALENCIA: You heard him, Hala in his own words. Tune into the shows tonight, talking about alluding to that he would be on TV tonight to talk
about what he went through today. I was in the courtroom, a packed gallery. We got the last seat in the courtroom. It was a sight to see
Roger Stone in shackles with his hands cuffed, resting in front of him. A man usually sharply dressed head to toe, civilian clothes, a polo shirt,
saggy jeans. Disheveled hair. He was incredibly polite to the judge. He did understand the instructions read to him. You heard in the interview
after court, still defiant, believes the charges are false and he's going to plead not guilty. Hala.
GORANI: Thank you very much. Abby, what are we expecting the President to say? He was supposed to come out at 1:30. Is there a deal to reopen the
ABBY PHILIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: There seems to be some real movement, perhaps some significant movement this afternoon. President
Trump in a few minutes is expected to come out and announce his support for a short-term extension of funding for the government. We're hearing till
February 15th. That would reopen the government, would allow for back pay for federal workers who have missed two paychecks now, and President Trump
is basically going to get all of that, not in exchange for his border wall. There will not be, according to what we have heard, money for President
Trump's border wall, which is the reason he refused to sign a bill that was passed in the House and Senate in December. So, this is a significant cave
on President Trump's part and an acknowledgment that the damage caused by this shutdown has gotten so severe, especially this morning when we saw
airports -- airport delays at major airports across the country. Sources tell us that was all building here at the White House, leading the
President to finally make this decision. What he is not going to do that many expected or in some cases hoped he would do, is declare a national
emergency. At least not at this stage. Right now the President is going to go the legislative route and is essentially going to give Democrats what
they've been asking for weeks and weeks, which is just reopening the government, funding the government, and putting aside talk of the border
wall until that three-week period where negotiators can get back to the negotiation table and perhaps come to a broader consensus on something that
will fund the government for a longer term.
GORANI: Well, we are seeing live pictures from the White House. I see Mike Pompeo, the Secretary of State Wilbur Ross, other top cabinet
secretaries as well, gathered there. I wonder, Stephen Collinson, Abby is calling this a significant cave. You can't really call it anything else
because the President has time and time again said he would not back down unless the Democrats agreed to fund the wall. And he's backing down in
many ways here if he announces this agreement.
STEPHEN COLLINSON, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: That's right. He shut down the government in December in order to try and get his border wall and he
would be reopening the government now without getting the funding for the border wall. So, there's no other way to look at it other than a climb
down. It looks like we've been waiting for, you know, the pressure, the political pressure to stop building on one or other side on this dispute.
It looks like with the crashing poll numbers, tales of deprivation of people who are not being paid, and now this mess in the air traffic control
system today, that was the thing that pushed this over the edge. I think it will be one thing to look out for, is whether the President says if we
get to the end of this three-week interim period and there's no deal, then I will take executive action. Then I will declare a national emergency.
If that is the case, it will be a climb down in a sense as well if that's the way it pans out because he would have accepted the Democrats' position
that he cannot close down the government in order to get funding for the wall. So, it will be a double victory for Democrats in three weeks if that
is the case.
[14:10:00] GORANI: But, Abby, how do you declare an emergency when it's a situation he's been talking about and complaining about for two years? An
emergency by definition is something that can't wait, that needs to be quickly and imminently dealt with. Would that be a convincing move?
PHILIP: That's exactly the reason the White House has delayed so long in potentially going with that strategy. There is a lot of concern in the
building, especially among White House counsel lawyers who say that if the President were to go with a national emergency, it would almost immediately
be challenged and the likelihood that it is stopped in the courts is almost immediately is very, very high.
So, I think the White House is expecting that that is going to be the likely outcome. It's going to be challenged, it's likely to be halted
while the legal challenges play out. That's one of the reasons you've seen President Trump hasn't gone that route. They have, according to our
reporting, identified up to $7 billion that could potentially be used for the wall. But they haven't done it because I think doing it means the
President could say that he is going to do the -- build the wall on his own, but in reality, the wall is very unlikely to get built for months, or
even years if he were to circumvent Congress on this issue.
GORANI: Stephen, is this a victory for the Democrats?
COLLINSON: I think it will be seen that way definitely, and a significant first victory for the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in her first showdown with
the President. That's the way the Democrats will certainly play this. It's going to be interesting to see what kind of reaction the President
gets from his right. One of the reasons the shutdown took place in the first place was because the President was worried about the reaction to
caving on the wall back in December and got a lot of push back from his critics, conservatives, pundits on the right. And as we've been talking
about all along, this is such a crucial issue for Donald Trump because the wall is a symbol of, in many ways, everything that his supporters saw in
his campaign. So, it's very difficult to see him coming out of this confrontation if it ends the way it looks like it's going to end, without
getting damage with the sort of broader coalition of U.S. voters, which we are seeing in the polls. But also, among his most fervent supporters and
cheer leaders in the conservative media.
GORANI: Julian is with us as well. He's making a show of force of it. Really, his top cabinet officials, Kristen Nielsen, Wilbur Ross, Mike
Pompeo, acting Attorney General Whitaker, his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, Kellyanne Conway, John Bolton. How is he going to try to spin this, do you
JULIAN ZELIZER, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, he'll just try to claim victory even though it's a defeat. We've seen this before. He says to the
world the way he wants them to interpret what happens, and hopes that the facts on the ground don't, you know, resonate with people. He will say
we're still negotiating. He still will promise to get the wall, but make no doubt about it, Democrats on the hill just stopped the President in his
tracks. And the White House is feeling the fallout.
GORANI: Sure. So, there were, of course, those delays at LaGuardia, having knock-on effects across the country. The optics of that were
terrible. But also, polls were showing that most Americans were blaming the President and not -- and Congressional Republicans and not
Congressional Democrats, Julian, for this shutdown.
ZELIZER: And that's what happened in 1995 and '96 when Republican Congress closed down the government or entered into a shutdown when Clinton was in
office. The public blamed them and eventually it really resonated. And I think the images you saw today and the stories about airlines not working
at full function, that really takes a bite. And Republicans saw this was not doing them well and they're frustrated with the President. They're
thinking of 2020. They're remembering 2018 and the last thing they wanted was the shutdown dragging down their polls.
[14:15:00] GORANI: Abby, we saw an aide there put down a, what perhaps looked like
the script for the remarks the President is going to read out. He'll be taking questions, I'm assuming. He's in the rose garden and reporters are
PHILIP: That's possible. We have seen some indications that they could open it up for questions afterward. But it's not clear. I mean, I think,
often the White House leaves it up to the President to decide how he wants to handle situations like this. This is obviously not a great day for the
President to be taking questions.
[14:15:00] There are a lot of bad stories out there, especially as it relates to Roger Stone, his long-time confidant. But also, this shutdown
has not been a positive story, as you just pointed out. His poll numbers have dropped precipitously. There are issues with air traffic control
across the country. These stories of federal workers going to food banks to try to feed their families, having to figure out where they're going to
get their rent payment for yet another month. So, it's not a great story for this President to tell, but it could be an opportunity for him to spin
this in a way that is more positive for him. It's just not clear how he's going to handle it and I think often what the White House does is they let
the President make that decision in the moment that he is out there facing reporters. I think regardless reporters will be yelling questions at him,
whether he takes them is another story.
GORANI: Sure. And we know sometimes these news conferences are on the short side. Other times they go on and on and on, and the President takes
many more questions than anyone expected that he would.
Stephen, in terms of the Democrats here, what's their strategy? What's in it for them here to strike even a temporary deal with the President when it
appears as though most Americans are blaming the President, he's got this Roger Stone story as well coming out that's not a positive story for him?
Why would they now start making deals?
COLLINSON: Well, I don't think the Democrats really want the government to be closed, you know, over the long term. And they can turn around and say
they've used their power that they were given by the midterm election voters in November and have constrained the President and have reigned him
in and h written a check which the voters sent them to Washington to do. It's interesting, going back to December, and the President's strategy ever
since, he initiated a shutdown on an issue in which he doesn't have the American people with him, that is, the wall. A majority of Americans don't
approve of a wall. A majority of Americans didn't approve of shutting down the government to get a wall. That does make a change, makes you think
about how the White House operates and how it's going to operate in the new division of power in Washington. The President has certainly had a lesson
GORANI: Stephen, he's walking out now, the President. So, walking up to the podium. Let's listen to his remarks.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you very much, my fellow Americans. I am very proud to announce today that we have reached a
deal to end the shutdown and reopen the federal government. As everyone knows, I have a very powerful alternative but I didn't want to use it at
this time. Hopefully it will be unnecessary. I want to thank all of the incredible federal workers and their amazing families who have shown such
extraordinary devotion in the face of this recent hardship. You are fantastic people. You are incredible patriots. Many of you have suffered
far greater than anyone but your families would know or understand, and not only did you not complain but in many cases, you encouraged me to keep
going because you care so much about all our country and about its border security. Again, I thank you. All American, I thank you. You are very,
very special people. I am so proud that you are citizens of our country. When I say make America great again, it could never be done without you.
In a short while, I will sign a bill to open our government for three weeks until February 15th. I will make sure that all employees receive their
back pay very quickly or as soon as possible. It'll happen fast. I'm asking Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to put this proposal on the
floor immediately, after 36 days of spirited debate and dialogue, I have seen and heard from enough Democrats and Republicans that they are willing
to put partisanship aside, I think, and put the security of the American people first. I do believe they're going to do that.
[14:20:00] They have said they are for complete border security and they have finally and fully acknowledged that having barriers, fencing or walls
or whatever you want to call it will be an important part of the solution. A bipartisan conference committee of House and Senate lawmakers and leaders
will immediately begin reviewing the requests of our homeland security experts and experts they and all law enforcement professionals who have
worked with us so closely. We want to thank Border Patrol, I.C.E. and all law enforcement. Requests of our homeland security experts and experts
they are and all law enforcement professionals who have worked with us so closely.
Been incredible. Based on operational guidance from the experts in the field, they will put together a homeland security package for me to shortly
sign into law. Over the next 21 days, I expect that both Democrats and Republicans will operate in good faith. This is an opportunity for all
parties to work together for the benefit of our whole beautiful, wonderful nation. If we make a fair deal, the American people will be proud of their
government for proving that we can put country before party. We can show all American and people all around the world that both political parties
are united when it comes to protecting our country and protecting our people. Many disagree, but I really feel that working with Democrats and
Republicans, we can make a truly great and secure deal happen for everyone. Walls should not be controversial. Our country is built 654 miles of
barrier over the last 15 years and every career border patrol agent I have spoken with has told me that walls work. They do work. No matter where
you go, they work. Israel built a wall 99.9 percent successful. Won't be any different for us. They keep criminals out. They save good people from
attempting a very dangerous journey from other countries. Thousands of miles because they think they have a glimmer of hope of coming through.
With a wall, they don't have that hope. They keep drugs out and they dramatically increase efficiency by allowing us to patrol far larger areas
with far fewer people. It's just common sense. Walls work. That's why most of the Democrats in Congress have voted in the past for bills that
include walls and physical barriers and very powerful fences. The walls we are building are not medieval walls. They are smart walls designed to meet
the needs of front-line border agents and are operationally effective. These barriers are made of steel, have see-through visibility which is very
important and are equipped with sensors, monitors and cutting-edge technology including state-of-the-art drones. We do not need 2,000 miles
of concrete wall from sea to shining sea, we never did, we never proposed that, we never wanted that because we have barriers at the border where our
natural structures are as good as anything we can build. They're already there. They've been there for millions of years. Our proposed structures
will be in predetermined high-risk locations that have been specifically identified by the border patrol to stop illicit flows of people and drugs.
No border security plan can ever work without a physical barrier, just doesn't happen.
[14:25:00] At the same time, we need to increase drug detection technology and manpower to modernize our ports of entry, which are obsolete. The
equipment's obsolete. They're old and tired. This is something we have all come to agree on and allow for quicker and safer commerce. These
critical investments will improve and facilitate legal trade and travel through our lawful ports of entry.
Our plan also includes desperately needed humanitarian assistance for those being exploited and abused by coyotes, smugglers and the dangerous journey
north. The requests we have put before Congress are vital to ending the humanitarian and security crisis on our southern border. Absolutely vital.
It will not work without it. This crisis threatens the safety of our country and thousands of American lives. Criminal cartels, narco
terrorists. Transnational gangs like MS-13 and human traffickers are brazenly violating U.S. laws and terrorizing innocent communities. Human
traffickers, the victims are women and children. Maybe to a lesser extent, believe it or not, children. Women are tied up, they're bound, duct tape
put around their faces, around their mouths and in many cases, they can't even breathe, they're put in the backs of cars or vans or trucks. They
don't go through your port of entry. They make a right turn going very quickly. They go into the desert areas or whatever areas you can look at
and as soon as there's no protection, they make a left or a right into the United States of America. There's nobody to catch them, there's nobody to
find them. They can't come through the port because if they come through the port, people will see four women sitting in a van with tape around
their face and around their mouth.
Can't have that. And that problem, because of the internet, is the biggest problem. It's never been like this before that you can imagine. It's at
the worst level, human trafficking in the history of the world. This is not a United States problem. This is a world problem, but they come
through areas where they have no protection, where they have no steel barriers, where they have no walls and we can stop almost 100 percent of
that. The profits reaped by these murderous organizations are used to fund their malign and destabilizing conduct throughout this hemisphere. Last
year alone I.C.E. officers removed 10,000 known or suspected gang members like MS-13 and members as bad as them. Horrible people, tough, mean,
sadistic. In the last two years, I.C.E. officers arrested a total of 266,000 criminal aliens inside of the United States, including those
charged or convicted of nearly 100,000 assaults, 30,000 sex crimes and 4,000 homicides or, as you would call them, violent, vicious killings. It
can be stopped. Vast quantities of lethal drugs including meth, fentanyl, heroin and cocaine are smuggled across our southern border and into U.S.
schools and communities. Drugs kill much more than 70,000 American a year and cost our society in excess of $700 billion.
The sheer volume of illegal immigration as overwhelmed federal authorities and stretched our immigration system beyond the breaking point. Nearly 50
migrants a day are being referred for medical assistance. They're very, very sick making this a health crisis as well. It's a very big health
crisis. People have no idea how big it is unless you're there.
[14:30:00] Our backlog in the immigration courts is now far greater than the 800,000 cases that you've been hearing back over the last couple of
years. Think of that, though. 800,000 cases because our laws are obsolete. So obsolete. They're the laughing stock all over the world.
Our immigration laws all over the world they've been there for a long time are the laughing stock all over the world. We do not have the necessary
space or resources to detain, House, vet, screen and safely process this tremendous influx of people.
In short, we do not have control over who is entering our country, where they come from, who they are, why they are coming.
The result for many years is a colossal danger to public safety. We're going to straighten it out. It's not hard. It's easy, if given the
Last month was the third straight month in a row with 60,000 apprehensions on our southern border. Think of that. We apprehended 60,000 people.
That's like a stadium full of people. A big stadium.
There are many criminals being apprehended, but vast numbers are coming because our economy is so strong. We have the strongest economy now in the
entire world. You see what's happening.
We have nowhere left to house them and no way to promptly remove them. We can't get them out because our laws are so obsolete, so antiquated and so
bad. Without new resources from Congress, we will be forced to release these people into communities, something we don't want to do. Called catch
and release. You catch them, even if they are criminals, you then release them. And you can't release them from where they came. So they go into
our country and end up in places you would least suspect. And we do as little releasing as possible, but they're coming by the hundreds of
I have had zero Democrat lawmakers volunteered to have them released into their districts or states. And I think they know that. And that's what
we're going to be discussing over the next three weeks.
The painful reality is that the tremendous economic and financial burdens of illegal immigration fall on the shoulders of low-income Americans
including millions of wonderful patriotic, law abiding immigrants who enrich our nation.
As commander in chief, my highest priority is the defense of our great country. We cannot surrender operational control over the nation's borders
to foreign cartels, traffickers, and smugglers. We want future Americans to come to our country legally and through a system based on merit. We
need people to come to our country.
We have great companies moving back into the United States, and we have the lowest employment and the best employment numbers that we've ever had.
There are more people working today in the United States than have ever worked in our country. We need people to come in to help us on the farms
and with all of these great companies that are moving back. Finally, they're moving back. People said it couldn't happen. It's happening. And
we want them to enjoy the blessings of safety and liberty and the rule of law. We cannot protect and deliver these blessings without a strong and
I believe that crime in this country can go down by a massive percentage if we have great security on our southern border. I believe drugs, large
percentages of which come through the southern border, will be cut by a number that nobody will believe.
So, let me be very clear. We really have no choice but to build a powerful wall or steel barrier. If we don't get a fair deal from Congress, the
government will either shutdown on February 15th again, or I will use the powers afforded to me under the laws and the constitution of the United
States to address this emergency. We will have great security.
[14:35:12] And I want to thank you all very much. Thank you very much.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: The president of the United States, we are proud to say, we've reached a deal to reopen the government. He
said he had a powerful alternative, but decided he did not want to use it this time.
Now, the deal will mean that the government reopens for three weeks until February 15th. The president said either a good deal at that point will be
struck or I will use the powers that I'm entitled to use to address this emergency.
He then really retreated on one of the major aspects of his campaign -- I mean, major promises of his campaign. We don't need to build thousands of
miles of concrete wall. We never proposed that, he said. He essentially then went on to say, what we proposed was a smart wall.
So, of course, during the campaign, build that wall, build that wall was one of the refrains at every Trump rally.
Julian Zelizer is still with me. Julian, what did you make of this? Because this was kind of a long statement. He went off script for a
significant portion of it, talking about the wall and crime and his --these topics that he goes back to again and again.
But this was all kind of a long way of saying or of admitting that he lost this battle.
JULIAN ZELIZER, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Kind of. I mean, he still wants to present it that he helped reach a deal and Republicans reached a deal with
the Democrats. There'll be a commission, a study border security. There'll be negotiations for something down the line. That's a way to
package a defeat as some kind of a victory. And then he went on into his traditional rhetoric about the threats he sees on the border.
But I think at this point, given what the polls are showing about how the public sees him and sees this crisis, that rhetoric really isn't sticking.
And I think many people will understand this is a political defeat for him.
GORANI: Phil Mattingly is on Capitol Hill. What exactly led to this compromise that is allowing -- that is allowing for the reopening of the
government for three weeks?
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Reality, to put it bluntly. You can package a bunch of things together that led them to this
point. You can look at the poll numbers where president Trump is under water by 20 or 25 points as Americans view who is to blame for the
shutdown. You can look at the bite that the shutdown is actually taking. People missing their second paycheck, 800,000 federal workers starting
Obviously what's going on with the airlines today was kind of a clincher here. But you also have to look at what's been happening behind the scenes
with members of President Trump's own party. Senate Republicans extremely frustrated behind closed doors yesterday at a meeting where Vice President
Mike Pence was actually in attendance.
Several of them telling the vice president, you have no strategy or whatever your strategy is, it's not working. There is a recognition inside
the White House that this was spinning away from them rather quickly. Recognition I'm told was underscored by Senate majority leader Mitch
McConnell, saying you need to figure a way to get out of this and soon.
And that's why we are ever where we are. The president was in danger of not just losing the American public support which he really hasn't had
throughout the course of this, but the most important part has been Republicans who have stuck with him throughout this process. That was
starting to change and therefore the president changed.
GORANI: And that was starting to change why, Phil, because Congressional Republicans started realizing -- I mean, I imagine that when polls indicate
that most Americans blame them for the shutdown, that this could become really politically toxic for them at the next election.
MATTINGLY: I think there was a piece of it. I think Republicans took some solace in the fact that more people blamed the president than blamed them
without maybe recognizing that people don't necessarily separate the party from the president in this case.
I think more broadly, and this is just in talking to Republican senators over the course of the last week or two, there's just frustration that this
just makes everybody look bad. They're not doing anything, particularly in the Senate. The Senate hasn't moved a single bill this year since the new
Congress started, since a lot of frustration there, there's a lot of nominations they want to move. There's a lot of lawmakers that come to
Washington to try and do something, despite the fact that it always seems kind of racked by gridlock.
And I think the frustration was the fact they're not getting anything done and the fact that they didn't have any sense whatsoever that the White
House knew what they were doing on this.
If they knew that there was a path out, if they knew there was a long game here where they would be both politically and on the policy front
victorious, I think Republicans would have stuck with him for a long time.
But when you reach day 34 or day 35, the White House proposal fails pretty miserably on the Senate floor. And there's a recognition that the people
in the White House are trying to communicate what the White House strategy is can't adequately do it. Senators who have to run races and they're
elected officials and are pretty prominent in their own minds and reality, they had enough of it. And I think that's where things kind of fell apart
GORANI: And, Julian, finally, I mean, how do you convince people that there is just this imminent emergency, this dangerous situation that needs
addressing as quickly as possible when it's been essentially two years and for the majority of that time the president, the president's party had
control of both Houses on Capitol Hill.
[14:40:12] How do you then convince people that this is an emergency when clearly it's something that had it been an emergency would have been dealt
with much sooner?
ZELIZER: Well, it won't be easy. If he declares emergency power, he will be challenged in court. And I'm not sure the courts. I would suspect the
courts will not be very open to this interpretation of what an emergency is. Meaning, you can't get what you want from Congress. And he could also
be challenged by the House of Representatives and then the Senate which can vote to revoke this kind of power.
So, I understand that that's where he's going with this, but I suspect he's going to get a lot of pushback if he tries to use that to find money in the
existing budget to build a wall that nobody wants. You know, maybe he's just waiting for this issue to go away and for the news to move to
GORANI: And the news usually does move to something else in this cycle.
GORANI: Phil Mattingly and Julian Zelizer, thanks very much to both of you.
Now, we've been following an extremely busy day for news. We want to turn now to the story of Roger Stone's indictment. It began, just to remind you
all, it began like this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: FBI, open the door. FBI.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: The FBI arresting the long-time associate of Donald Trump and charging him in relation to the Russia probe, including obstruction and
lying to Congress.
Now, you might have only heard of Roger Stone in recent times, but he has been infamous in Washington circles for decades. The self-described dirty
trickster has worked for Republicans right back to Richard Nixon, and he certainly doesn't hide that fact. He has a tattoo -- he has a tattoo of
the 37th president on his back. This image is from his own Instagram.
And even when he was in custody, someone was updating that account promoting t-shirts to help fund his defense. Stone's unorthodox style of
politics inspired a Netflix documentary called "Get Me Roger Stone." Take a look at part of it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I suggested that Trump should explore big for the presidency.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He created Donald Trump as a political figure.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Would you lose her?
ROGER STONE, AMERICAN POLITICAL CONSULTANT: What have I lied about?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Have you spoken with the WikiLeaks founder?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can't just say that.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You have to be outrageous to get noticed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: America may be collapsing, but Roger Stone is determined to enjoy it.
STONE: I revel in your hatred because if I weren't effective, you wouldn't hate me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Let's speak to Morgan Pehme. He's one of the directors of that documentary. He's in New York and joins me live.
Morgan, thanks for being with us. Jeffrey Toobin who's our contributor on CNN, in your documentary says, he's almost a crazy guy who shows up at
every significant moment in recent American political history. And he is. He's got that -- the attire, the things he says. He revels in this
attention that people are giving him.
MORGAN PEHME, DIRECTOR, "GET ME ROGER STONE": That's right. That's one of the reasons that we were drawn to make a movie about Roger. I mean, many
people in politics engage in dirty tricks, but they try to paper over their misdeeds.
Roger, as he says, revels in your hatred. He revels in his reputation. And as Jeffrey Toobin said in our movie, he's kind of the malevolent
Forrest Gump of American politics. He always shows up in the dark shadows.
GORANI: Yes. And Trump is, by the way, spoke to you before for this documentary. He heaped praise on Roger Stone. And He said, Trump, Roger
always wanted me to run for president. How much influence did Stone have on Trump and in terms of - especially in terms of his decision to run?
PEHME: Roger was literally the first person to suggest to Trump that he run for the presidency back in the mid 80s. And then for the next 29
years, Roger put his all into turning that dream into a reality. Every four years, he would kind of float the Trump candidacy. Most people
thought that was ridiculous. Roger was roundly ridiculed and ultimately he was vindicated by the result in 2016.
GORANI: You saw him on the courthouse steps today, Morgan. I presume you were watching.
GORANI: Like all of us were. The first thing he said was, basically, the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about. I
mean, the first words out of his mouth after being indicted.
[14:45:02] PEHME: That's true. Roger subscribes to something he calls Stones rules that are very integral to our movie. They're aphorisms that
guide his approach to politics and life. And one of them is it's better to be talked about than not be talked about.
And so, Roger, you know, I think he's putting a brave face on today's events. I am certain that this is a terrible day for Roger and for his
family. But he is setting himself to have the best outcome regardless of how his legal affairs play out.
GORANI: So, knowing him -- Morgan, I'm sorry, Mitch McConnell is speaking on the Senate floor after that deal that was announced to reopen the
government. Let's quickly go live to that for a moment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), SENATE MAJORITY LEADER: -- of any other funding bills. So with cooperation we can pass legislation opening the
government and send the DHS appropriations bill to a conference with the House today.
I'm glad the closed portions of the federal government will reopen and get back online. I'm glad that the dedicated men and women of the coast guard,
law enforcement, the TSA. And all the other federal employees will not have to go longer without pay for their work, and will receive their back
I know the pain that this episode has caused to many Kentuckians and to people all over our country. They deserve this resolution. So, going
forward, I hope our Democratic friends will stay true to the commitment they've stated constantly over the past weeks, that once government was
reopened, they'd be perfectly willing to negotiate in good faith on a full year government funding that would include a significant investment and
urgently needed border security measures, including physical barriers.
After all, the only way the federal workers are going to have stability and certainty beyond the next three weeks, the only way our border is going to
have real security is if Democrats will stop playing partisan games and get serious about negotiating with the president on a long-term compromise.
The days ahead will tell us whether our Democratic colleagues are actually serious about securing our nation, whether they actually mean what they
So, the president has called on the Senate to act on these proposals and now that there is an agreement between the Democrats and the White House,
we can make that happen.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: Yes. The Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, there on the Senate floor, essentially laying out some of the aspects of this deal that
allowed for the reopening of the government, and calling on Democrats to cooperate on another deal.
We will -- Chuck Schumer, who is the Democratic leader in the Senate is saying a few words. Let's listen in for a minute.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY), SENATE MINORITY LEADER: -- thousand federal workers and millions of Americans who depend on government services. I
want to thank President Trump and Leader McConnell.
As just outlined, we have agreed to pass a clean three-week continuing resolution to reopen the government.
Also, we will pass legislation in the Senate related to the department of homeland security so the House and Senate can participate in a conference
committee on that legislation.
In the conference, Democrats and Republicans will have the opportunity to negotiate the details of the Homeland Security bill which includes issues
of border security, humanitarian aid, drug inspection technology and many others.
We expect the continuing resolution to clear the House and be signed by the president today.
As soon as the president signs the legislation to open government, we in Congress will roll up our sleeves. I genuinely hope that this process can
produce something that is good for the country and acceptable to both sides.
We don't agree on some of the specifics of border security. Democrats are against the wall. But we agree on many things, such as the need for new
technology and the need to strengthen security at our ports of entry. And that bodes well for coming to an eventual agreement.
I believe there's good faith on both sides to reach an agreement, and we will work diligently to achieve one.
And because we've set this up as a conference, Democrat and Republican leadership, House and Senate will be involved, as will the appropriators
from those committees.
[14:50:09] Most importantly, this agreement means that the government will reopen --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GORANI: All right. Chuck Schumer, Mitch McConnell, we heard from the leaders of both parties in the Senate. Hoping that some sort of deal will
materialize in three weeks. At the end of this period, this three-week period. We heard from the president, President Trump earlier, saying that
an agreement was in place to guarantee the opening of the government until February 15th.
We're going to take a quick break. We'll be right back with more of our breaking news on the other side. Stay with CNN.
GORANI: Let's go back to the arrest of Trump associate, Roger Stone. On the day, of course, that we heard from the president that a deal had been
reached to reopen the U.S. government for three weeks until February 15th.
I want to bring in CNN legal analyst, Elie Honig. He's a former federal prosecutor and he joins me from New York.
So, Representative Ted Lieu of California said he believes Stone, by saying publicly on those courthouse steps, that he will not turn on the president,
he won't testify against him, is hoping for a pardon. Do you agree with Ted Lieu?
ELIE HONIG, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I think there could be something well to that. If we break it down, Hala, there's really only three ways that this
can end. One is with a trial, which would be disastrous for various people who are part of the campaign and the administration.
Remember, today's indictment talked about Stone coordinating between WikiLeaks and senior officials in the Trump campaign. If we had a trial,
we would learn exactly who those officials are, where they were getting their marching orders from. That would be really problematic for those
Two is a guilty plea. Roger Stone has been adamant he will plead to nothing. He will not cooperate. He will not plead.
And three, is a pardon. So I do think it's on Stone's mind to try to sort lobby for a pardon.
GORANI: Why that pre-dawn raid? I mean, you had just some guys as part of that FBI team there that looked like they were going to war. I mean, what
usually -- how do you usually get the OK for that kind of operation?
HONIG: sure. So, any time you have an arrest that needs to be made, there's really two ways to do it, Hala, in the federal system. One is, if
you believe the person is not a risk to flee, not armed, not dangerous, not likely to destroy evidence, you call the lawyer and say, hey, we have a
warrant for your guy. He needs to surrender to the marshals by 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning.
This was option B. And this tells me that Mueller and his team made some calculation either that Stone was likely to flee, I don't think that's it.
Pose some danger, I don't think that's it.
[14:55:01] In my mind, I think the concern was that he would destroy evidence. Right? Because remember, on the spot, they executed searches of
Stone's home in Florida, his residence in New York City. And I think the reason is that calculation is --
GORANI: But, Elie, wouldn't he have destroyed that evidence before? He's known for a long time that he could have been arrested. So this isn't a
huge -- even told Nick Valencia, our reporter that it wasn't a surprise to see the FBI show up on his doorstep today.
HONIG: Yes, it's a good question. And Stone himself has said before, I expect to get indicted. Perhaps they thought there were electronic devices
that they wanted to seize. But you're right, I think that's exactly what Stone would say.
Look, I think there will be some who look at this and say, it's heavy handed. He's not a violent criminal. He didn't pose a threat to those
around him. But this is something that is in the discretion of the prosecutors and the federal agents. I think they could be second guessed
here, but this is a decision they made.
GORANI: What was -- what is the wider implication for Trump himself here, as a result of this arrest?
HONIG: The wide implication is that the Russian hacking effort and the distribution of the hacked e-mails through WikiLeaks, has now landed inside
the Trump campaign.
Now, president Trump may say -- had nothing to do with me. I didn't know anything about it. But Robert Mueller has specifically alleged in this
indictment that multiple senior Trump campaign officials were giving Stone directions on what to do here.
So there's -- look, Mueller is incredibly careful. Every word that he puts into an indictment is backed up and is there for a reason. And that is an
unavoidable consequence of this.
The other thing that jumps out of me about this indictment is the coordination that was happening here wasn't just sort of loose
coordination. It was strategic. If you look carefully at the indictment, there are very specific examples where they are getting on the same page in
terms of the targeting with these leaked e-mails. Right? There's one passage where the indictment talks about let's get out the message that
Hillary Clinton is sort of failing health and failing mind. That's a strategic message. And there's a couple other examples like that, too.
GORANI: Elie Honig, always a pleasure. Thanks so much for joining us today on the program.
A quick recap of our other breaking -- of other breaking news story, and that is the deal that Congressional Republicans and Democrats have reached
to reopen the U.S. government, but not indefinitely, only for three weeks until February 15th. Donald Trump came out addressed reporters in the Rose
Garden, "We are proud to say we've reached a deal to reopen the government."
One thing that is not part of this deal is the one thing that Donald Trump insisted was not negotiable, and that is funding for the wall. Well, it
appears as though the president on that point has caved. He did say, though, that if after February 15th there is no deal that is satisfactory,
that he could consider using emergency powers to address the situation.
We'll have a lot more on the reopening of the U.S. government and also on the arrest of long-time Trump associate, Roger Stone, throughout the next
few hours on CNN.
I'm Hala Gorani. If it's your weekend, have a great -- have a great one. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is coming up next.