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President Trump Inaugural Committee Subpoenaed By Federal Prosecutors; About 60 Percent Of President Trump's Schedule Is "Executive Time," Report Says; President Trump Notes That National Emergency To Build Border Wall "Not Off The Table"; Virginia Governor Ralph Northam Clings To Power As Calls For Him To Resign Grow; State Of The Union Guests Include Boy Bullied For Being Named Trump. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired February 4, 2019 - 21:00   ET



CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR, CUOMO PRIME TIME: Thank you, Anderson. I am Chris Cuomo and welcome to PRIME TIME.

We have new developments. Federal Prosecutors are now closing in on the President's Inaugural Committee. Who made donations for his parties? How much were those donations? And why were they made?

Daunting questions that will be asked more commonly, now that the President is under Democratic Oversight. We have the latest on a string of new hearings planned just for this week.

We're going to bring in a key member of the House Intel Committee. Plus, it - we have this story about one of the biggest leaks to come out of the Trump White House yet.

Have you heard about these schedules, the President's private schedule? It's not about making him vulnerable from a security standpoint. But boy, do we learn a lot from this leak, and what is and is not in this schedule?

And it's pretty easy to find Democrats who say Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam has to resign. But we have someone who's known him a long time since they were kids. She makes the argument that he should go nowhere, and she wants to convince you of the same.

It's Monday. What do you say? Let's get after it.




CUOMO: All right, it would seem the President has a lot more to worry about than just the Russia probe.

There are now 17 investigations swirling around his world, and those are just the ones we know about. One of them is looking into possible misuse of funds by his Inaugural Committee.

Tonight, that Committee is being ordered to turn over documents about its donors, finances, and activities to Federal Prosecutors in New York. The subpoena is pretty wide-ranging, and - and that's just a statement of allegations that they want discussed with the person they're sending it to.

But House Democrats now have power to issue these kinds of subpoenas, make people come in and talk, and they are going to launch a new fight for the President's tax returns as part of this.

They're also calling his acting Attorney General to Capitol Hill along with his former lawyer, Michael Cohen. The Oversight Blitz comes as the President addresses the Democrat chirps of impeachment. Listen to this.


DONALD J. TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The only way they can win because they can't win the election is to bring out the artificial way of impeachment. And the problem is you can't impeach somebody for doing the best job of any president in the history of our country for the first two years.

It's supposed to be high crimes and misdemeanors. Well, there was no high crime. There was no misdemeanor. There was no problem whatsoever.


CUOMO: All right, now first, high crime and misdemeanor is not a legal standard, OK? Here's a new phrase if you want to start thinking about what may or may not happen.

You know how I feel about this. We're a long way from any legal action against the President. But abuse of Office is a phrase that I think you're going to become more familiar with, as we go forward.

Now, we're very lucky tonight. We have a key member of one of the most powerful Oversight committees in Congress, Republican Chris Stewart of Utah. He sits on the House Intel Committee.

It's good to have you, Congressman.


CUOMO: So, these questions about the Inaugural Committee, you guys never looked at this about who made the donations, were they in the right names, were they from foreign nations, what were they doing. Why not? And do you have any concerns about these questions?

STEWART: Well the reason we didn't on - on the House Intel Committee is because it wouldn't have been under our jurisdiction. Of course, we were focusing on Russia and foreign influence etcetera. And - and look Chris, I just think you're going to have a little bit like the flavor of the day. There's going to be the investigation of the week over the next few years. I want you - I think you said there were 17 investigations. I wouldn't be surprised if we end up with 30 or 40 different investigations.

And, as they move forward, I think the fair thing to do is, and surely we've learned this from the last two years is OK, if there's accusations, and if they're credible, then let the investigation go forward, and let's see what it - what it shows.

But, to be fair to a lot of people who have been accused of some very serious crimes, including even the crime of treason over the last two years, many times, these investigations don't show and prove what many people think, and some of them actually hope that they will.

CUOMO: Fair point. You know, you have - you have to look if it's reasonable. There should be scrutiny if it wasn't reasonable, and if anything comes out of it that deserves attention, we should know, and the discussion should go from there. Understood!

Let me ask you a little bit about what did come out of your Committee. I'm reading it in a different way now that we've learned more in this indictment about Roger Stone, in comparing the two, I have some language I wanted to go over with you.

Just from the outset that - you were a big fan of getting that report out, and it was criticized as being just something that allowed the President to say "There's no collusion. Look at the Nunes report."

Do you have the same level of confidence now that you did when this report came out that we've seen nothing that speaks to coordination or collusion by those around the President with people they shouldn't have been dealing with?

STEWART: Well yes, when you say the report, you mean the Nunes Memo, is that true? Is that what you're referring to?


STEWART: Yes, absolutely. I mean the Nunes Memo, and anyone can look at it, and I would encourage everyone to go read it. It's 2.5 pages long.

And it's very, very clear, and there's not a word in that, there's not a sentence in that that I don't stand by, and there's frankly nothing in that that has been had any - any doubt cast upon. And--

[21:05:00] CUOMO: You don't believe that there's any proof of any coordination or collusion by those around the President with people who had involvement with Russian interference?

STEWART: Well, absolutely not. And by the way, you know who else has come to that conclusion, at least, so far as we can tell? Mr. Mueller. Because in none of his indictments does he - does he indicate any U.S. person has been involved with collusion or conspiracy with the Russians in the campaign.

CUOMO: I would - I would disagree. Conspiracy, you got me. But I think that's my point about this report. You're looking at crimes, and I understand why, but that's not the full mandate of the Special Counsel, as you know.

In fact, the first item delineated by Rosenstein was to look for proof of contact and coordination with those who may have been involved with Russian interference.

Collusion, and I do not mean to speak out of school with you Congressman, you got a better mind than I'll ever have on my best day. But collusion, just for the audience, is not a crime unless we're talking securities law, it's a behavior.

Manafort and Stone, just to use the two most recent examples, they were trying to coordinate. They were trying to collude with people who they thought may be involved with Russian interference. Isn't that a fair read?

STEWART: Chris - Chris, I don't know how you came - come to that conclusion at all. There is no indication of that at all in these indictments with - with Roger Stone. He's indicted for seven things, five counts of lying to my Committee which, by the way--


STEWART: --I take very seriously. And all of this breaks down if we can't presume that you can hold a hearing or that you can have a court - a court hearing without people lying to you, so that I'm - I - well I'm sincere when I say I take that very serious.

CUOMO: But you didn't know he was lying to you at the time?

STEWART: Well no, of course not. We - we couldn't have known that. That's - that's--

CUOMO: Really?

STEWART: --well that's something that comes out after you're able to provide evidence contract--

CUOMO: But if you had just subpoenaed--

STEWART: --that - that contradicts that.

CUOMO: --the records, some of them which were publicly available, you would know that Roger Stone was telling two different stories.


CUOMO: Which one is true is up for you guys to figure out.

STEWART: No. Well, and over a period of time, you can figure that out. But when he's in there for hour after hour after hour, and you don't have contrary evidence before you, which in this case, we didn't, we didn't know that.

Now, it took a little time to put that together, but I want to go back to the original point, Chris, because I think this is so important, because you're saying that there's evidence of collusion here.

Once again, he's - he's indicted for five counts of--

CUOMO: Not the crime, not the conspiracy, not a crime, collusion is a behavior, it's not a crime.

STEWART: What you--

CUOMO: I'm not saying there's criminal conduct.

STEWART: OK. Whether you define it as behavior, as a crime, I don't care. I don't think there's evidence in either one. Five counts of--

CUOMO: Well you know he was talking to Guccifer.

STEWART: Well maybe--

CUOMO: You know who they say Guccifer is, right?

STEWART: Well we didn't (ph)--

CUOMO: We have the direct messages from Stone. You could have had them the same way if you were as curious as we are. You know about Credico and Corsi, you didn't call them.

And again, you weren't running the Committee. I'm not hanging this on you, Chris, to be honest. You are - are willing to come on, and answer hard questions, and I always tell my audience, you deserve a pat on the back for that, and I know you weren't calling the shots.

But I'm saying, you didn't call Credico or Corsi, the Committee, not you, not Nunes, and you could have. If you were curious about this, you would have found the same things that are evident in the indictment.

STEWART: Well, I absolutely reject your - your kind of assumption that I wasn't curious or that we weren't curious about that. Of course, we were. We called hundreds of witnesses. We had 330,000-plus pages of documents provided to us.

But look, Chris, you could have - you could name dozens of people on this that we didn't call, and it's because of the time. We had no reason to call them because there was no indication that there was collusion or that there was other nefarious activity taking place.

I want to come back to - I want to make this point because I've been trying to for a little bit now.

CUOMO: Please.

STEWART: That is Roger Stone, five counts of lying to our Committee, five counts of doing (ph) witness tampering or one kind of witness tampering, one count of impeding the investigation, nothing - nothing from Mr. Mueller that indicates anything of collusion or - or working with Russians.

CUOMO: I don't understand that interpretation. And again, Chris, you know where I'm coming from on this, Congressman Stewart. I'm not accusing you of hiding or anything like that. I just want it to be open.

If you read this indictment, plain text, OK, just not looking at it with any level of sophistication, the Special Counsel is clearly making the case that Stone was trying to coordinate with people he thought had the goods on Hillary Clinton, ill-gotten goods from WikiLeaks, from Guccifer, from whoever, that's coordination with people involved with Russian interference.

He believes from his own indictment that he was talking to Guccifer and others. That's a sign of coordination that he was directed by a Senior Official--


CUOMO: --to find more of those things if he could, that Special Counsel believes there's reason to believe that's true. That would be coordination. Not crimes, except if you lie about it, which he did. I'm just saying it seems that your report was much more generous than the Special Counsel's.

STEWART: Well - well - well couple things, the Nunes report doesn't deal with this at all. The Nunes report deals with something actually far more--

CUOMO: I know.

STEWART: --important. And that is the - the reason for the FISA application, and some of the deficiencies with the FBI and Department of Justice in their application process (ph). It doesn't mention Oliver Stone at all - or - or Roger Stone has nothing to do with that.

CUOMO: It sounds like an Oliver Stone though movie.

STEWART: Yes, it does.

CUOMO: We both agree about that. Go ahead--

STEWART: It does. Hey, well--

CUOMO: --continue, Congressman.

[21:10:00] STEWART: --well one other point, and if you want to open this up to behavior, and not - not actual conspiracy or criminal activity, then Chris, to be fair, you have to talk about some of the things that the Clinton campaign did as well, which is, as we know, working with foreign agents who then worked with Russian agents to gather dirt on their - on their opponent.

I mean, how can you-- CUOMO: That's a difference between working Intel sources and having an inimical government--

STEWART: These weren't Intel sources.

CUOMO: --come to you and say they can help you.

STEWART: He was not an Intel source. He's a private citizen. He - he hadn't been in Russia in years. He was not an Intel source.

CUOMO: But that's why they used him at GPS was because he was a former Intel guy who said he had the ability to talk to people on the Russia side about what they may know--

STEWART: Well he - he made all sorts of claims, but to call him an Intel source is just factually inaccurate. He wasn't an Intel source at all. He was a private citizen who hated--

CUOMO: At the time.

STEWART: --who - who hated Mr. Trump, admitted he - he viscerally didn't want him to be elected, and then used Russian agents to collect this information. If you're going to open this up to behavior, then let's look at behavior on both sides.

CUOMO: Well you have to because if you're going to look at the President of the United States for impeachment, we can say this, standard high crimes and misdemeanors all we want. We both know it's not a legal standard.


CUOMO: It's about abuse of Office and what makes you guys upset enough to vote against him.


CUOMO: That's why I'm laying it out, and I know I can depend on you to answer, and to give a full-throated answer for the audience, and I can't tell you how much I appreciate it. Thank you for doing so.

STEWART: Right. Thank you, sir.

CUOMO: You are always welcome here, Congressman Stewart from Utah.

STEWART: Thank you.

CUOMO: Appreciate it.

All right, so do you wonder why the President seems to have so much time on his hands to tweet and watch Fox? You know why? Because he has a lot of time on his hands.

There was a leak of his schedule. And remember, General Kelly came up with Executive Time, which is a nice way of describing, doing whatever he wants. Wait until you see what we see, next. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)







CUOMO: You know, one of the most common comments I get is that "Man, this President seems consumed with watching Righty-media, and being on Twitter all the time."

[21:15:00] And you know what? His schedule gives you guys some basis for your complaints. There's another leak from the White House. It gives us another insight.

According to three months of leaked White House schedules, about 60 percent of President Trump's time is so-called Executive Time, a phrase that reportedly covers time for tweeting, phoning friends, and watching TV.

And understandably, Sarah Sanders says, "This is just the President being creative that he's simply a different kind of President."

Nobody's going to argue with that. But, for comparison, take a look at this.

This is FDR's daily schedule from back in the day. Take a look at this, and how much booking there was from 9 o'clock in the morning or so until 11:30 at night. Why? Because the President's got like the hardest job in the world.

And you certainly hear that from those who have done it. Take a listen.



And it's difficult.

BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You know, nothing truly prepares you for the demands of the Oval Office. You can read about it. You can study it. But until you've sat at that desk, you don't know what it's like to manage a global crisis.


CUOMO: I can't even imagine! I can't even imagine the stress and the strain. That's why these men, almost without exception, either prepare like crazy, or have people around them who are as prepared as they possibly can be.

So, as this current President prepares to address you tomorrow night about promises kept, I would remind you that he promised you more and better. He told you he knows how to get things done. Listen.


TRUMP: I promise you that I will work so hard, we're going to get it turned around.

I just want to stay in the White House and work my ass off.

I'm going to be working for you.


CUOMO: He doubled down when he suggested that he'd never go golfing the way that Obama did. He may have even said never at all. And then, remember what he said about Hillary Clinton and stamina.

Look, we know those were BS arguments when he made them. They were just cheap politics, but they worked at the time. But now that we see his schedule, it seems that the Resolute Desk, you know what we call this, it's more of a prop for photo ops than anything else, according to the schedule.

60 percent Executive Time goes to what has become a disturbing trend with this President, an apparent unwillingness for the difficulties of the job he was elected to do.

So, when you hear him about wandering out of a key policy meeting with the Speaker of the House, seeing his own Intel Chiefs, say publicly that he's misinformed on global threats, when important parts of his job like making sure the government is properly staffed, you know, they still have a ton of jobs outstanding, right, you have to ask who's doing the job of the President?

Oftentimes, we know the answers. You remember when the military decided to drop the Mother of All Bombs, the MOAB in Afghanistan? Who made the decision? Not people who were elected to do it.

So, it is good that someone leaked this because you deserve to know how much of the President's time is about you versus him.

When you see giant holes in his schedule and tons of Executive of Time which, by the way, is officially what I'm going to call fight training officially (ph) from now on, I used to call it "Me Time," now it's "Executive Time."

Back to what matters, you look at the schedule you look at no log of who is coming and going at the White House, no reports of his conversations with foreign leaders, you need to know what the President does, it'll give you insight into why he does what he does.

Remember, the President works for you.

All right, speaking of that, and what works getting done, we are now 11 days away from what could be another shutdown. Would the President really do that again with all we learned about the pain and the reach just to get a wall?

Two questions for a great debate, next.








CUOMO: Listen, I hate that we even have a clock for something like this. These continuing resolutions, there's got to be a better way. But here we are, 11 days until brinkmanship right, and the President once again digging in.



TRUMP: Well we're going to have to see what happens on February 15th.

I don't like to take things off the table. It's that alternative. It's national emergency. It's other things. And, you know, there have been plenty national emergencies called.


CUOMO: It's not even the question, would you? We know he would. The question is, how could you given what just happened? And that would have led the segue into national emergency, why (ph) he sees it as an alternative. It's not just about one interview. It's about the reality, OK?

The national emergency is seen as the easy way forward for him. But now, senior Republicans are saying, "It ain't so easy." But with no deal in sight, and the President so prepossessed with this perception that he won, he won, what's going to happen is an intra-party fight, our future?

Let's debate, Bakari Sellers and Rick Santorum joining me now.

Rick, the idea of a national emergency in 11 days, what's your take? RICHARD JOHN SANTORUM, POLITICIAN, ATTORNEY, AUTHOR, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR, REPUBLICAN PARTY MEMBER, FORMER UNITED STATES SENATOR FROM PENNSYLVANIA: Well I mean we're hearing (ph), you - you use the term that Donald Trump was digging in.

But, let's be honest, I mean the person digging in right now is Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats who are saying not a penny for the wall. And, you know, that's not how you negotiate when you want to get to a compromise.

And so, the President has been the one be - willing to compromise. And Nancy is doing this. This is all politics. What Nancy has figured out, and you've - you mentioned it here, is that this issue of going it alone divides Republicans.

This is a - this is a bonanza for Nancy. She can stand and - and - and satisfy her base, and then leave Trump with no alternative but to divide his. So, it's a - it - it's all a political calculus, but it's not in the best interest of the country, and it's not what she pledged she would do if the President reopened the government.

CUOMO: Well the problem is Bakari is that this is what the President pledged he would do, "Wall, wall, wall, wall, wall, everything's solved by a wall." And now, he's got Mitch McConnell sitting in the corner, stay boy, and it's, "Give me the wall or else."

Is it worth a shutdown? Is it worth a national emergency?

BAKARI SELLERS, FORMER SOUTH CAROLINA HOUSE MEMBER, DEMOCRAT: You know, I don't like to correct you per se, Chris. But I will tell you that he promised wall, wall, wall, but he also promised Mexico was going to pay for it, not the American--

CUOMO: True.

SELLERS: --taxpayers.

CUOMO: True.

SELLERS: And so, we're here in a pretzel. We're here trying to clean up his lie.

And I just have to push back on what - what Rick said. The fact is that this is not a wall. An edifice to Donald Trump is not good public policy. An edifice to Donald Trump is not good immigration law.

[21:25:00] SANTORUM: Then you - you want to tear down all the other walls--

SELLERS: We need compre--

SANTORUM: --Bakari?

SELLERS: But what we need and we - we can repair those, we can upgrade those. We can actually modernize our immigration.

SANTORUM: Why? If they're - if they're - if they're not necessary--

SELLERS: We can - we can modernize - we can modernize our immigration system.

SANTORUM: If they're not necessary, why - why are we playing along (ph)?

SELLERS: We can actually make sure - we can actually - we can actually make sure that we have a 21st Century immigration system, and not just some edifice to Donald Trump.

SANTORUM: But - but no more walls. Tear - tear those down?

SELLERS: Perfect example. If we have a trial--

SANTORUM: Tear them down?

SELLERS: --we have a trial - we have a trial going - we have the trial of the century going on right now.

A 11 weeks of testimony with Pablo Escobar, and in that trial, they said that all of the drugs that he shipped into the country, none of which will be stopped by a wall. I mean there - this is absurd. And - and just to say that you want to build--

CUOMO: El Chapo and his tunnels.

SANTORUM: So tear them down?

SELLERS: --just - just - just to want - just to want to build a wall because something Donald Trump wants is not good policy. And the fact is this isn't a - this isn't a national emergency.

And it's - it's Nancy actually having, or Speaker Pelosi, I would want to show her the due respect, Speaker Pelosi actually having public policy on her side, and you know what else she has on her side? The American people. That's why she's polling higher than the President of the United States.

SANTORUM: What public policy Bakari are you talking about because every Border Control Agent, everybody who's down there on the - on the front line is saying that walls are effective. I - I don't know where you come up with this.

CUOMO: They say walls - wait, hold on, hold on. Let's be - let's be careful. Let's be--

SANTORUM: Walls are effective and that more walls are necessary.

SELLERS: That's not - that's not--

CUOMO: --let's - hold on, let's just be careful, gentlemen, especially on this show.

One, everybody knows, and they come after me for it, I believe the men and the women who are in charge of keeping us safe that physical barriers are helpful to them, none has ever told me it is their top priority.

The President made it his, and he has handcuffed them--

SANTORUM: But that's not the point you're making, Chris.

CUOMO: --to that priority.

SANTORUM: Chris, you're not making--

SELLERS: That - that's the point. But the point I'm making is - the point I'm making is (ph)--

SANTORUM: Because it's the President's point (ph)--

CUOMO: That's the point I want to make.

SANTORUM: --doesn't mean it's not necessary. OK?

CUOMO: I'm not saying that it's not necessary. I'm saying it's not a panacea--

SELLERS: The point I'm making - the point I'm making--

CUOMO: --and the President says it is.

SANTORUM: And I don't think the President is saying it's a panacea.

CUOMO: And that's deceptive.

SELLERS: It's - it's--

CUOMO: That's all he says.

SANTORUM: The President is willing to do other things.

CUOMO: No. He only talks about the wall.

SANTORUM: He's put a lot of other things on the table. And neat (ph)--

SELLERS: That's not what he's willing to do though. But the - the irony--

SANTORUM: --he always talks about it. But he's put lots of things on the table.

SELLERS: --the irony in this, Rick the--

SANTORUM: And he's not getting any cooperation.

SELLERS: Rick, the irony - the irony in this is that this is all the President's talking about when it comes to immigration reform. He's only talking about a wall. And the complete irony of this is that he's willing to shut down the government over the wall, and guess who will not get paid? Border Patrol Agents.

SANTORUM: OK. Look, this is fake news, Bakari. This is fake news. SELLERS: And yes, we need - and yes, we need, yes--

CUOMO: But Rick - Rick, you're not being fair to the audience.

SELLERS: --that's - what?

SANTORUM: This is fake news, Bakari.

CUOMO: No, no, no, hold on. Rick, come on.

SELLERS: What - what no. What are you--

CUOMO: Don't - don't say that BS on this show.

SELLERS: Yes. I mean that's absurd.

SANTORUM: No, but--

CUOMO: You know that this is the opposite of fake news.

SANTORUM: --the President has put forward a detailed plan, has offered to compromise in a lot of other areas.


SANTORUM: Talked about additional funding on a--

CUOMO: It's on paper.

SELLERS: --why - why are you shutting--

SANTORUM: --variety of different areas, and he's open to doing it (ph).

CUOMO: It's on paper.

SELLERS: Why are you shutting the government down--

SANTORUM: And Nancy Pelosi is saying "No" to all of it unless--

SELLERS: --over $5.6 billion of a wall?

CUOMO: It's - it's on paper.

SANTORUM: --she doesn't get any money for a wall. That's it.

CUOMO: It never comes out of his mouth.

SELLERS: That's not true.

CUOMO: He puts all of the main priorities that matter more than physical borders last or not at all. We'll hear it again tomorrow night where he'll make up things about--

SELLERS: But - but--

CUOMO: --human trafficking. Hold on, Bakari.

He'll make up things about drug trafficking because he wants to justify a physical barrier that doesn't even address the fake problems he's bringing up. And he handed it to Nancy Pelosi. He handed it by being so narrow.

He made it easy for her to say, "No, we will not prioritize the physical over everything else. You lose!" He gave it to her, Rick. You wouldn't have done it this way. But he did. And now, he's got to pay the price.

SANTORUM: But he's--

SELLERS: But actually can I--


SELLERS: --can I - can I please - can I please correct, Rick because he--

CUOMO: Go ahead.

SELLERS: --he was - he was not - he was not honest when he gave his last answer. I want to say that the Democrats actually offered $1.6 billion for border fencing.

CUOMO: Which is what they asked for in the last budget.

SELLERS: With - with that, we actually offered $1.6 billion, and plus we were going to actually monetize - monitor - modernize our immigration system.

But what Democrats also want when we talk about a comprehensive immigration reform is we want to make sure that we have a pathway to citizenship for DACA. We want to make sure that there is a pathway to citizenship for those who are T - Temporary Permanent - Temporary Protective Status.

We want to make sure that we have these things in place and that is a comprehensive immigration reform package.

SANTORUM: And as you know, Bakari, as you know--

SELLERS: If you want to argue about making sure--

SANTORUM: --the President - the--

SELLERS: --if you want to make sure - if you want to argue about making sure that we - that we--


SELLERS: --fully fund our Border Patrol Agents or give--


SELLERS: --give them more resources, that's one thing. But to simply say - and the last point that I want to make to you, Rick--

SANTORUM: Yes, OK. I think you made enough points, Bakari.

SELLERS: --because this is - this is where - this is where Republicans--

SANTORUM: Because you guys - there's two against one, and you're taking three times the time.

SELLERS: --this is where Republicans - this is where Republicans get this wrong (ph).

CUOMO: It is not two against one. You'll be able to make your point, I promise you that.

SELLERS: This is where--

SANTORUM: So, let's - let's--

SELLERS: --this is - this is where--

SANTORUM: --let's - let's - let's be honest.

SELLERS: --this is where - Rick, let me just finish this point because--

CUOMO: Go ahead.

SELLERS: --this is where Republicans get this wrong. The majority of drugs in this country come through ports of entry.

CUOMO: He knows that.

SELLERS: The largest bust of Fentanyl - but he'd - acts like he doesn't. I know he knows that, but he acts like he doesn't, so I have to say it on national TV so that tomorrow night when the President--

CUOMO: Because the President puts him in a box by lying about it all the time.

SELLERS: --correct.

SANTORUM: OK. So, here's - so here's--

SELLERS: So, let's clarify--

CUOMO: That's why.

SELLERS: --that right now.


CUOMO: No, no, look, Rick, you know it. You know there's no big truck driving through holes in the fence.

SANTORUM: So, let - let's-- CUOMO: You know that the drugs come - bulk of it come through the ports of entry. I know you know that. Make your point.

SANTORUM: OK. Well, thank you, I appreciate the opportunity to get a couple of seconds in here, so let me just say this.

[21:30:00] I will agree with you that the President's fixation on - in his rhetoric on talking about the wall and all of the aspects of the wall and what the wall can do to help is - is - is his priority, and he - and he - and he reflects that in his rhetoric.

But the reality is what the President has said when he put forth his proposal a few weeks ago, and as he has said so at - at negotiations, and is willing to put DACA on the table, to put the - the - the temporary folks on the table.

CUOMO: But they gutted it.

SANTORUM: To put additional book - funding on the table. And Nancy Pelosi has said, "Even if you give me all this stuff, I'm not giving you a penny."


SANTORUM: You talk about $1.6 billion, Bakari, let me finish. You talk about $1.6 billion.

SELLERS: Please do.

SANTORUM: That's not on the table right now. She has said no.


SANTORUM: So, don't talk about there's money on the table. It's not. Nancy Pelosi is playing a hard game--

SELLERS: I said a past offer.

SANTORUM: --a hardball game right now, and she's banking--

CUOMO: All right, let--

SANTORUM: --on the fact that - that he will - he will - he will--

CUOMO: --let me ask you guys something else before I let you go.

SELLERS: But also (ph) can I just - can we just point out the intellectual--

SANTORUM: --he will go and do an emergency and it'll divide the Party.

CUOMO: All right, go ahead, Bakari, make your last point.

SELLERS: Can we point out the intellectual dishonesty? Can we point out the intellectual dishonesty of Rick's last point? And this is where - this is where it falters. The fact is Donald Trump offered for a pathway to citizenship for DACA, and those with TPS, after he took it away. It's unconstitutional, and he was the one who took away their protection.

SANTORUM: Well, excuse me. DACA was unconstitutional in the first place.

SELLERS: So, do not take away their protections. Do not take away--

SANTORUM: That's - that's the bottom line.

SELLERS: --their protections. Do not take away their protections and then give it back to us and say that is a deal. That is not a deal.

CUOMO: Look, here's the--

SANTORUM: Well that was incorrect and that was (ph)--

SELLERS: That is not a compromise.

CUOMO: We're going to have--

SANTORUM: --was - was - was fraught with legal problems, so don't - don't - don't - don't even--

SELLERS: I'm sorry. I'm - I'm sorry but we can't--

SANTORUM: --go down that road. That's just baloney.

SELLERS: --we cannot have that intellectual dishonesty.

CUOMO: Here - here's the reality that we're going to see tomorrow night.

He's going to have to pick a road in the wood to borrow from a much better mind. He's got two ways to go tomorrow night, guys, and we'll leave it on this thought. I - and we'll pick it up after the speech.

One is, listen, let me be very clear about my priorities again, because you guys are all caught up in the wall, and he's going to make the case that Rick is making here tonight.

But I've never heard the President put the true priorities for the Border folks who are keeping us safe in the order that they put them, or he's going to say, "I'm going national emergency." When he makes that choice, we're going to have a lot to talk about.

I think that second choice is way worse than some people in your party think your party's starting to move towards a more rational understanding of what a national emergency would mean, if he calls it. So, let's see which road he takes tomorrow night. He's got to pick.

Rick, you're always welcome to make your arguments. I don't tell you - I don't care how much heat I get for having you on to make the case. You make the case.

SANTORUM: You do. It's I appreciate that.

CUOMO: Bakari, as always, thank you for being here. I appreciate it.

SELLERS: Thank you.

CUOMO: All right, so another big story. And look, you got to - look, you got to chew on these things. You have to. I know it's a little frustrating. It's better than the alternative, all right? Silence, and a silo, and a vacuum, look where that gets you.

So, should the Governor of Virginia leave? Very easy to get people to say, "Yes, he's got to go." I have somebody for you, knew him in high school, even earlier, campaigned to help get him elected, is African- American, and very proud, and knows why these pictures are so offensive.

Her case to you, next.








CUOMO: Calls for the embattled Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam, they're growing by the day, I mean any way you look at it.

Many of his fellow Democrats and those within his own State Legislature are refusing to back him, raising a question, how he'll (ph) govern. Why? Because of this picture on your screen right now, this ugly, bigoted photo, which now he denies he was in. He doesn't know how it got in his yearbook.

My next guest is Carla Savage-Wells. She's the Governor's childhood friend. She campaigned for him when he ran for Governor. She has a case for him, and what she thinks should happen. Listen.



CUOMO: All right, thank you very much for joining us.


CUOMO: So, I just heard one of my colleagues use the term "Onslaught" about Governor Northam. There's too much, keeps piling up. There's another picture, an ugly nickname, there's a description of

one of the people who helped make the Medical School yearbook that you had to submit the pictures for your personal page. There's no other explanation.

Do you agree with that idea that it's an onslaught, it's too much for him to carry, he must go?

SAVAGE-WELLS: Ralph's a strong person. But no, he must not go. And only he knows what's too much. You've had so many people to say that they've not seen a racist bone in his body. And I can attest to that from 1972.


GOV. RALPH NORTHAM (D), VIRGINIA: Good afternoon. Thank you.


SAVAGE-WELLS: I agree with the honor in Ralph that says, "If I quit now, I'm a racist for life." And I think it's that same kind of commitment that made him come out to apologize.

CUOMO: Right. I hear you about that. I mean Medical School is different.

You know, unfortunately, you now have different things to deal with. You have a picture of him at VMI, where he was undergrad, where he had this ugly nickname Blankman, no reason for us to say it. People will have heard of plenty.


CUOMO: But it speaks to somebody who doesn't like Blacks. And you're saying, "Completely inaccurate, that's not who he is." Fine. Then--

SAVAGE-WELLS: Complete - completely inaccurate.

CUOMO: --then you have the picture in Medical School, where he is either in Blackface or wearing the KKK hood, we still don't have straight talk. Now, that's his problem, Carla. His past aside, do you think he's handled this the right way?

I still don't know if he's in that picture, which one he is, and why it exists at all. I know he can moondance - moon - moondance? Listen to how old I am. I know he can moonwalk.


CUOMO: I know that he loves Michael Jackson. I know what he thinks about shoe polish. I know that he was going to moonwalk unless his wife told him not to. He hasn't handled this in a way that seems to reinforce the point you're making now. Is that part of the problem here?

SAVAGE-WELLS: I would say it is part of the problem. But I would say this. I would say that he was so horrified in seeing that picture, this is my take on it, that he felt like - he felt compelled to apologize for whatever actions he may have had as a child.

And we know that 25 is not 18. But anybody that's 45, and has a mortgage, knows that 25 is not grown.

CUOMO: I hear you but you got to own it.

SAVAGE-WELLS: But I'm going to say this--

CUOMO: You got to own it though, Carla.


CUOMO: That's the problem with an apology is that look, I put the picture on the yearbook, he created mystery around it. We now know well it's a (ph) chance that there was mystery.


CUOMO: We all know how yearbooks work.

SAVAGE-WELLS: No, he - he didn't - he did not - I don't think he said he put the picture on the yearbook. I don't think that--

CUOMO: But I'm saying--

SAVAGE-WELLS: --that's what he said (ph).

CUOMO: I know. But--


CUOMO: --how is that not the case? That's how it works with a yearbook page. You give in the pictures you want on your yearbook page, they put it on.

He didn't just come out and own, and say, "Look, this isn't who I am. I'm who Carla says I am. I've known him most of my adult life, long before that actually, and I put that picture there. It was stupid. This is the person I am in the picture. Here's what was going on at the time. It's not who I am now."

That's how you own it.

[21:40:00] SAVAGE-WELLS: Chris, there are 607 people listed in the doctoral program currently at EVMS. How many could there have been in '84? How credible is a student-run newspaper that nobody and the faculty knew was - was being published that wasn't supervised? How many copies could there have been at that time?

I - I'm just saying the credibility of the - or the accuracy of that news source you want to talk about, fake yearbook, or the - like the accuracy of that news source, the fact that he didn't purchase one, I don't - we don't know how many people have been mislabeled in a yearbook. You think about that. CUOMO: All right. I give you that.

And a Right-wing blog brought this up that was evidently motivated by what the Governor had said about certain reproductive laws that are coming out, abortion laws that are coming out, they didn't like it, arguably, they started looking for things. Fine!

But if that's the case, then isn't the natural reaction, "I don't know what that picture is. I don't know how it got on that page. I don't even know if that's the real page. I don't even have my yearbook. But I've never been in a picture like that before, so I don't know what the hell is going on here," that would be owning it too.

The Governor didn't say that either

SAVAGE-WELLS: What the Governor did was took ownership of a picture that had his name as a prominent heading. He took ownership of - as the Governor, he had to, he felt compelled to address that.

This is a gentleman that was a - a Member of the Honor Society of one of our military institutions. He felt compelled to speak to the citizens of Virginia to that image. But looking at that for the first time, I can't imagine how gobsmacked he must have been, just as I was, disgusted.

Thinking it was photoshopped is what I thought. And - and who knows what he thought seeing it the first time. Who knows what went through his mind. I don't. But the person--

CUOMO: You don't think he saw that picture before?

SAVAGE-WELLS: --the person I know - the person - if Ralph says he didn't see it before, he didn't see it before.

CUOMO: I understand what you're saying that people who know him support him. But can he stay in Office if the electeds around him in his state and on the national level don't want him there?

SAVAGE-WELLS: Well let's put it this way.

How many people - how many politicians have polarized factions of - of their constituents or their constituents? How many people are still serving and they and - and opinions are polarized about them at the highest levels of government, and they are still effective?

How - how long is this news cycle going to go? The good that I know my friend is capable of doing, the good that he's done for the Commonwealth to date is going to win itself out if he's allowed to - to continue as Governor. So--

CUOMO: I - I get the reference but their own--

SAVAGE-WELLS: --Ralph is strong. And it's--

CUOMO: --their own are (ph) turning against him. That's the difference. I understand the illusion that you're making. I get it. But they're not calling for him to step down the way they are with the Governor.

Let me ask you this because you've made a very--


CUOMO: --zealous defense. To African-American people, whether they're electeds or not, and they say, "I'm not having this. We have to be better than this. The people who are in Office can't be stained by this type of behavior," what do you say to them?

SAVAGE-WELLS: I would distance myself if I - if I - if I had future aspirations in politics, I would distance myself from this as well.

That is what African-Americans, not that I can speak for all African- Americans, that's what anybody should do with an image like this, presented to them like this. I would distance myself from it as well.

Ralph Northam is not the person that is depicted in the photograph that's on his page. If - if Ralph tells me he's not in that picture, I believe him.

CUOMO: Thank you very much, Carla. I appreciate it.

SAVAGE-WELLS: You're welcome.


CUOMO: God have different perspectives to feed what's going on, what looked like an inevitable result. We'll have to see what the Governor does now.

Now, tomorrow night, very big night for the President, delivering his State of the Union. We're just learning now about some of the special guests invited by the First Family, those guests are always statements.

Why one of them is already making some news, next.








CUOMO: Big night tomorrow night. State of the Union, the guests who will sit with the First Lady include a sixth grader from Delaware, who has been bullied. Now, by now, we should all know about the scourge of bullying. Somewhere between a third to a quarter of kids in America say they've been bullied at school. Trump's own Health and Human Services identifies being gay or disabled as those most at risk.

The First Lady though has made bullying a cause, as you know. So, the person she's inviting is Joshua Trump, sixth grader, being bullied at school because of his last name, Trump. No relation.

Let's bring in D. Lemon. I hate bullies. You hate bullies. You got to feel for this kid.

My concern though about tomorrow night is that he's going to be used as a political pawn that of all the different kinds of bullying that goes on, they're highlighting somebody giving Trump a hard time.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR, CNN TONIGHT WITH DON LEMON: Yes. Well the First Lady invited him. And I have to - I think it's a good thing that she invited him. I think you'll agree with that. And no - listen, my last name is Lemon, Chris, come on.

Do you think I - I got it in elementary school, junior high school, high school, and then I just kind of made it work for me, and I still get it now, you know, so I understand it. And no one likes to be bullied. And I say, good on the First Lady for inviting him.

But I also say the political pawn thing, you know, I don't know. I hope that - I hope that they're not using it for political expediency.

CUOMO: No, I'm just worried about the--

LEMON: Yes. I--

CUOMO: --I'm worried about the kid because he's got enough trouble. You know, his family's letting him go out there--

LEMON: That's where I was going.

CUOMO: --hopefully to empower him, give him some confidence in himself. And now, if he becomes Representative of the President, you don't want to put that--

LEMON: Yes. That's--

CUOMO: --on anybody let alone this kid.

LEMON: --that's where I was going. If they really don't want to draw attention to his last name, and keep him from being bullied, maybe it's not the best thing for him to go to the State of the Union--


LEMON: --and get all of this press. I don't know. The parents can decide that.

[21:50:00] But I think that if they didn't want to, maybe he shouldn't go. But I think it's a good thing that the First Lady invited him. And let's hope it all works out for good for this kid. He's--


LEMON: --he's a sixth grader, right?

CUOMO: Look, she's in a jam. She wants to add - address something that needs to be addressed. Problem is she's married to one. You know, I mean he - he is bullied in this Office the way we've never seen.

Bully pulpit is one thing, Teddy Roosevelt never meant it the way this President executes it on a regular basis.

LEMON: The lesson - the lesson - if there is a lesson in this for anyone that's beyond the kid, it's for this President. Maybe this President has something to learn from a 12-year-old sixth grader is that--

CUOMO: Yes, and look-

LEMON: --and maybe he'll - he'll see the error of his ways, and he'll stop calling people names, and making fun of them, because this kid knows how it feels firsthand to be bullied.

CUOMO: True.

LEMON: And maybe the President can learn from that.

CUOMO: True. I think a more reasonable hope is that the--


CUOMO: --kids who are giving this kid a hard time now recognize that "Boy, this is amazing that he got recognized and he got to go there, and let's give him a break, and let's worry about ourselves and be better to others."

LEMON: I hope so. The internet is a terrible place. And so, sometimes kids can be really, really cruel. As you know, you have three young ones, three of them.

I do have to say, we were talking about kids, and about being in school, this is much later in school, you know, the whole yearbook thing with Northam, and you just - I just saw - we'll talk about that at the top of the hour, I just saw his friend on.

I'll have a - a member of the Congressional Black Caucus on. She has a very interesting take on what she thinks should happen to Governor Northam.

CUOMO: Key interview.

LEMON: I - I also have two White House insiders for both Republican and Democratic administrations going to talk about this Executive Time. They have some insight on that, and what the President's folks are saying what's true about that and what's not true.

CUOMO: Beautiful! D. Lemon, see you in a few.

LEMON: See you.

CUOMO: OK. Tomorrow night, big night, I have a prediction for you. It's not even a hunch. I'll put money on this with you. I know that there is something that is central to the President's message, OK? And he is not going to mention a word about it tomorrow night.

What is it? Why won't he? Next.








[21:55:00] CUOMO: I know they say the President's address tomorrow night is going to be about unity and working together. But I suspect immigration will be discussed in ways that are inaccurate, and divisive, and intentionally so, specifically, the talk of the Brown menace.

That's my derisive description of the President's insistence on selling you a false image of those seeking entry. His arguments about drugs and trafficking and gangbangers, we're not a wall away from stopping any of that, and those who keep us safe know it, and so does the President.

The overwhelming majority of people who come illegally are looking for work, and they find it. Yet, you hear very little in terms of outrage from the President when it comes to those doing the hiring. But he knows this to be the reality. Why?

Three reasons. First, big money wins with this President too. He doesn't attack the rich, the businessmen, but he knows they're hiring, driving the demand for migrant labor.

Two, doing that would distract from the xenophobia and the anger that POTUS depends on to sell his message. His base won't be as angry at the mostly White employers hiring cheap labor.

And then, third, and this is the biggest reason, this is my argument, our President is part of the problem. You know how his supporters insist the President is not a politician. They are right, essentially. Our President is not a politician. He's a businessman.

And in that role, up to this very minute, he has hired undocumented workers, lots of them. We told you about it on this show not too long ago.

You remember the allegations from attorney, Anibal Romero, who represents Trump Golf Club workers, who were not only undocumented, but who say Trump's Club helped them find and get fake papers. One met the President. He tipped her, talked to her.

Now, given the scrutiny, five of the President's Golf Clubs are trying to get rid of those workers. 18 from the clubs in New York and New Jersey have been let go in the last two months. Coincidentally, that's when the reporting started coming out.

Wonder how many work at hotels, and buildings that he has any control over. But for all the fury and the false statements about the Brown menace, I predict, you will not hear a single word about those creating the demand for these folks, those doing the hiring.

And they're hiring because they need the labor, and they like the price point, and the economy needs them as well, and everyone involved knows it.

And yet, the President savages a reality that he himself benefits from. Will he mention his clubs and his illegal hiring and the actions of those who work for him and allegedly covering up for the same people he villainizes? Of course not.

I'm not saying my prediction is as savvy as a bet that would be like the Rams will only score three points in the Super Bowl. That guy deserved the 100 grand he won for that.

Who knows? Maybe the President catches this show, as he sometimes does. Maybe it's his staff. Maybe they will add something about hiring. But I doubt they will address his own. It would be great if he did.

But, just in case, I'll give you a second prediction. When asked about this, and at some point he will be, he will likely deny that he knew anything about it, just like in the Mueller probe, and it'll be just as difficult to believe.

He'll probably say, "Well, they lie, these workers, they lie, that's what they do, Brown menace." But that won't be what the reporting shows. So, when you're listening to him rail against the migrants, and not those hiring, remember this, and chalk it up to hypocrisy.

And as far as that quality goes for politicians saying one thing and doing another, but this President is certainly a master of that when it comes to his lust for selling you on the Brown menace. But just remember this, the same people this President wants you to hate, he hires.

See you tomorrow night. We're going to be on tomorrow night at midnight Eastern for special coverage after the State of the Union. Thank you for watching.

CNN Tonight with D. Lemon will pick it up right now. LEMON: OK. Let's - a couple things, OK? So, let's talk about this. You talk about the Brown menace, right? And - and how he demonizes immigrants.


LEMON: I - I've been harping on this.