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Feds: Woman With Chinese Passports, Electronic Devices Illegally Entered Trump's Mar-A-Lago Resort In Florida; Trump Admits Closing Border Will Have "Negative Impact On The Economy"; Trump Changes Tune On Publicly Releasing Mueller Report. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired April 2, 2019 - 21:00   ET


[21:00:00] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR, ANDERSON COOPER 360: Republicans should be, quote, more paranoid about vote counts.

He made his remarks at a party function in Washington tonight, telling the crowd, and I'm quoting again, "I don't like the way the votes are being tallied. I don't like it, and you don't like it either. You just don't want to say it because you're afraid of the press."

The President offered no specifics.

He also claimed that the sound from wind farms may be causes cancer. You won't be surprised to learn there's no sound science to support that claim. They say the noise from wind farms causes cancer.

With that I'll hand it over to Chris. Chris?


COOPER: They, I know. Yes.

CUOMO: Very convenient. Thank--

COOPER: They may say I'm a dreamer, Chris.


COOPER: But I'm not the only one.

CUOMO: You're not the only one. My man, Anderson, thank you.

I am Chris Cuomo. Welcome to PRIME TIME.

Who is the Chinese lady at Mar-a-Lago? And did you see how close she got to our President? Is it relevant that she's a Chinese national? The suspect was apparently jacked with devices right out of a Bond movie.

The question for us is, with an Intel expert, did China really send a spy to the President's house?

And why the President is now backtracking on his call for the full Mueller report to come out? I thought it totally exonerated him. What happened to his bold claim of "Let's get it out there?" We're going to have a bold Great Debate.

And we showed you what's happening at the Border. The President's best idea is still to shut it down to help fix the system. The pros on the Border can't justify that notion. The White House is scrambling. Will this party stand up?

The call continues for Congress to stop waiting on this President and do its damn job. Why haven't Left and Right done anything reasonable to address the real emergency on the Border? We're going to demand answers from another lawmaker. What are they waiting for?

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




CUOMO: A thumb drive with malicious software, we know it as malware, that's what prosecutors say a Chinese national had on her when the Secret Service arrested her this weekend for illegal entry at Mar-a- Lago, of course, the President's resort in Palm Beach.

Now, you read this thing here? Did you read it? You know, how we are on this show, right? I want you to read this stuff for yourself. You have to. It's only a few pages. It's the affidavit from the Secret Service Agent that was there and kind of processed this situation with this Chinese national woman.

And it - they really go out of their way to say that she's a Chinese national. That's why I keep reporting it. It's relevant to the government. It's like something right out of a spy movie. But it was a 100 percent real.

This woman is now charged with making a false statement to law enforcement and being somewhere she wasn't. The President was not there for any of this, so wasn't that kind of security issue.

But it raises very serious concerns. Did President Xi over in China send a spy to our President's playground?

Let's bring in Intelligence Guru, Mike Rogers.




CUOMO: Couldn't ask for a better guest tonight. I mean can you bat this aside as a suggestion that this lady was a spy?

MIKE ROGERS, (R) FORMER HOUSE INTELLIGENCE CHAIRMAN, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY COMMENTATOR: No, you can't, no. Honestly, you can't right up front. So, there's a - there would be a series of things you'd have to get through to make that determination.

Listen, the Chinese in the past have run some really poor espionage operations. They're like drunken fraternity brothers trying to break into your living room to get the last beer, all right, really noisy, very clumsy, everything goes wrong.

They've been getting better over time. In the last few years, they've actually gotten very good about recruiting assets that can get in and steal information. This look really sloppy to me.

The fact that if you were trained, you would never have deviated from what your story was at the front gate to any security checkpoint, that wouldn't have changed in any operation that I would ever be aware of.

The malware, I'd have to know what does it do? What was its intention? Was it is just to get in and disrupt, meaning if I plugged it into a device anywhere in the system in the hotel, it would cause them problems? Or was it a spyware where it was designed to sit and wait and collect information and get it back?

And then, what was on the other devices? I guarantee you, if there was malware deliberately planted on that thumb drive, there is likely other malware or spyware on those other devices. And I'm sure that's what they're going through in with a fine-tooth comb tonight.

CUOMO: Several phones, a laptop, a remote hard drive, remote access hard drive and this thumb drive that you're talking about with the malware, so what's your take? What do you think this woman's going to turn out to be?

ROGERS: If I had to guess today, it's somebody who thought they might be currying favor back home in China, thought that they had some way into Mar-a-Lago, and clearly they did, at least, getting through the first gate, and was trying to curry some favor.

And so, that malware could have been anything as simple as when I connected on the device at the hotel, remember the Business Center or other things, that's one way you can breach those - the securities in the hotel system, and maybe that's what they were trying to do.

CUOMO: You know--

ROGERS: It just doesn't feel like a spy effort to me given how sloppy the cover story was.

CUOMO: Right.

[21:05:00] ROGERS: You know, her story changed. She didn't seem trained. She kind of fessed up halfway through this. She wasn't supposed to be there. That - that is not a typical spy operation, just not.

CUOMO: Sure is bizarre. And I have to tell you--

ROGERS: It is bizarre. CUOMO: --I want people to read this criminal complaint because I have to tell you, if it wasn't for - here's my take. Please, bat this aside as well, Mike.


CUOMO: If it weren't for the Receptionist, this lady may have gotten where she wanted to go inside of Mar-a-Lago.

The Secret Service people who - who interviewed her, they're like "Oh, we can't read this. It's in Chinese." You know, "Oh, well these look like Chinese passports, you know, let's get her - let's get her into Mar-a-Lago. She's here to swim. She doesn't have any swim clothes on her, you know."

And then the Receptionist starts going at her about "Well, what event? Why are you here?" And the events don't check out. She then goes back to the Secret Service and they wind up pulling the string on her. Thank God for the Receptionist.

ROGERS: Yes. And, you know, again, this could have been one of those probing operations as well. How - how can we get in with a simple story and what could that story be? I mean we've seen those operations in the past too.

Remember, doesn't have to be the Golden Egg kind of an operation where you go and steal the crown jewels in the first effort. Some of these things are processed over time.

And this could have been one of those operations that may have shocked her how far she got into the operation, where they could just collect enough information, say this is what I used at the front gate, this is what I used at the second gate, and then she could have been well on her way, and she went to the Receptionist, busted by the Receptionist at Mar-a-Lago.

And so, you know, again, it seems odd to me because it was really poorly planned. But it doesn't mean they couldn't have made the effort, and you won't really know until you go through all those electronic devices, you find her--

CUOMO: Sure.

ROGERS: --her path back in Shanghai, you do a little research back there with our Embassy and their folks to see what happened.

CUOMO: Poorly planned but she almost got where she wanted to go.


CUOMO: Let me ask you something else talking about--

ROGERS: She did (ph).

CUOMO: --planning and whether it's working or not. The Democrats are worried that they're not going to get disclosure.

That's outwardly their rationale for sending subpoenas. What do you think of the political play of the subpoena?

I know they're legal documents. Latin, they mean under penalty that, you know, you have to respond. But this is a political play. Do you think it's the right play? And what do you make of the desire for disclosure?

ROGERS: Listen, I think disclosure is fine. There is a process. I think they should have waited for the process to take hold. You know, the - the Attorney General is going to go through and do the redaction. If they don't like it or they--

CUOMO: They say no redaction. They say no redaction.

ROGERS: Well, you know, again--

CUOMO: Cicilline was just on saying, "We look at this stuff all the time," Mike. And you know, Mike Rogers, as you guys should know, was in Congress for a long time.


CUOMO: "We look at this stuff all the time. We take an oath. We won't reveal the secrets."

ROGERS: I hear you. But there are people in - in that report, third- party, non-involved, I think they have a right to be protected.

I'm an old-fashioned guy. I don't care if you're a Republican or a Democrat. The law shouldn't club you because you - you got caught in the crosshairs. We - we should never let our government on either side do that that this has happened a lot in this process from both sides.

I think that's terrible. So, we ought to protect the things we know are deserving of protection.

There is going to be classified information. And remember, it was a counterintelligence investigation. Some of that will be redacted for sources and methods protection. That's the appropriate thing.

Keeping people out of this firestorm, I almost said something else storm, is - is probably in their best interests. If they had nothing to do with it, they were just interviewed, you know, supporting materials--

CUOMO: Right.

ROGERS: --as a former FBI guy, I go and talk to your neighbor, and say, "Tell me about Chris Como," and he says, "Oh, my gosh, he's terrible. He what - you know, he does whatever," and so, I write that down.

It doesn't mean it's true. And so, then when we do the further investigation, you determine that wasn't true. There's no merit to it. The neighbor just was honked off because what - for whatever reason. And that information gets in these files.

And so, somebody takes the 302, the document that the FBI agent does, and says, "Oh look, this guy is a terrible guy because of this. You could ruin the guy's life for--"

CUOMO: When it's just an allegation at best.

ROGERS: It's just an allegation that was unproven. And so--

CUOMO: Right. But you know what happens on the flip side though, Mike. If this stuff doesn't come out, then it seems to be that you're withholding it because you're worried about it, and that creates its own storm politically.

ROGERS: Well I mean I think the report should go to Congress at some point. I do. Underlying materials, I - I - I'm a little bit - I don't know. I - honestly, I don't know if I'm sitting right here if that's the right decision.

It depends on what the redaction looks like. And if they can justify it, I think the Attorney General should come up, and justify the redactions, I think in classified settings that would be appropriate to - to own - you - to get beyond the redactions.

That's all fine to me. But I just think we have to be careful. I mean the whole notion here, people are in a frenzy, and that's when people - real, honest, good citizens get hurt in that stampede.

And we - and, again, the law is designed, and Lady Liberty is blindfolded for a reason--

CUOMO: Right.

ROGERS: --to protect people from that stampede, and I just think that we ought to be cautious here.

And the thing with the Democrats doing it now, it kind of burns their bridge. It makes them look like they're - they - they're trying to pick a fight and find - if they would have gone through the process--

CUOMO: You're right.

ROGERS: --and then said, "You know what? This is not acceptable and we're going to"--

CUOMO: You're right. But they don't trust the process.

ROGERS: Well--

[21:10:00] CUOMO: Some of them cannot believe that it wasn't more damning what came out from Mueller, at least in the summary. Look, let's be fair. It's just four pages. Even the A.G. is now saying that this was just an initial set of conclusions, it wasn't supposed to be a deep dive.

I hope not, four pages off of about 400. But some of them don't believe it and the others believe. "Well if you're so confident about it, let it come out."

So, look, I get your transparency. I'm a journalist. You know, we've - we've always want more. We'll see how it plays out. But timing will also be an issue. You're right.

Mike Rogers, value-added.

ROGERS: Yes. Thanks.

CUOMO: Boy, I got lucky having you tonight with what happened in Mar- a-Lago. I've never heard of anything like that before.

ROGERS: Yes. Thank--

CUOMO: It's good to have your take.

ROGERS: Thanks. Zaijian.

CUOMO: What does that mean?

ROGERS: Chinese for goodbye. So--

CUOMO: I was going to say, don't take a shot at me like that, think I'm not going to see you later. Take care, Mike. Thank you.

ROGERS: Thank you.

CUOMO: Threats - zaijian, I didn't know that.

Threats and lies, you know what that could be? A title for the drama if someone ever writes the movie about this Presidency.

But it does seem that our President seems to revel in misleading you. And we in the media, let's be honest, it's hard for us to escape the cycle.

And yet, no matter how common it gets, no matter how frustrating, we cannot let truth abuse go. What the President says about the Border, about his own father, the facts matter, and he can't keep them straight.

And we have the one man who has made it his job to do nothing but staying on top of what the President says, and when it isn't true to the point of deception. We got him next.

Plus, he told you, our President, "I want the Mueller report to come out. I want it to be public. I'm completely exonerated." Now he's telling you something else. Why?

Let's debate what Mike and I were talking about. We'll have people come in here make the case for what you should see.








[21:15:00] CUOMO: Once again, lots to check from the President as he sat down next to the z, everything from asylum seekers at the Border to where his father was born, what is fact, what is fiction?

Here to set us straight on all these claims is the Washington Bureau Chief of the Toronto Star, Daniel Dale, always good to have you on PRIME TIME.

You know, it always stings who's around when the President is doing this. It's not like it's just locker-room talk. He's like standing next to Putin, you know, when he, you know, just completely throws water on our Intel agencies, next to the NATO Secretary General, you know, when he's saying these outlandish claims.

So, let's go through a few. The Border, OK? The President had started with the idea of closing the Border as an economic boost to the United States. Now, he's saying something different.

Do we have it to listen to? Here it is.


DONALD J. TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Sure, it's going to be - have a negative impact on the economy.

With a deficit like we have with Mexico, and have had for many years, closing the Border will be a profit-making operation.


CUOMO: Which is it, my young brother? Is it profit-making or is it bad for the economy?

DANIEL DALE, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF, TORONTO STAR: It's obviously bad for the economy. You know, the claim that this would be profit-making because the U.S. has a trade deficit with Mexico is simply nonsensical.

You know, a trade deficit is not equivalent to a loss. A trade surplus is not equivalent to a profit. So, Trump has - has gotten it right after getting it wrong before.

CUOMO: All right, let's go to the asylum hearings. For the 23rd time, OK, the President falsely claimed nobody comes back for an immigration hearing. It's only like 1 percent to 2 percent. Listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: So what they've done over the years is they release them into the United States, and they say, "Come back in four years for a trial." And nobody comes back. I guess 1 percent - 1 percent to 2 percent on average come back, and nobody can understand why they come back. They're the only ones that come back.


CUOMO: This is - look, everybody should know this is nonsense.

I'll tell you what's true that we're not going to discuss here. You know, the backlog of cases, it's like 800,000-plus cases are already there. That is something that is a real impediment for people.

But in terms of the idea of who comes back, what do we know, Daniel?

DALE: Well you don't have to listen to me. You can look up the data from the U.S. government, from the Trump Administration, which says that in 2017, 89 percent of asylum-seekers showed up for their court hearing.

You can argue that a 11 percent not showing up is - is - is too many too much. But - but it's not even close to 1 percent. For the entire population of people having immigration hearings, it was 72 percent.

Even the relative - well the - even the anti-immigration, the Conservative Center for Immigration Studies says that about two-thirds of people have come back over the last number of years.

So, again, you can make the argument that it should be more, but it's not even close to 1 percent or 2 percent.

CUOMO: I don't even know where he gets the 1 percent or 2 percent anyway.

DALE: I think he's - he's caught - it's imaginary. He's made it up.

CUOMO: All right, so then there's this one that should just matter to us. I hope everybody knows the answer to this one, but it's about Puerto Rico. "That country" is what was said by one of the President's team. Here it is.


HOGAN GIDLEY, WHITE HOUSE PRINCIPAL DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: They have now come to $91 billion with all we've done in that country where they've had a systematic mismanagement of the goods and services we've sent to them.


CUOMO: Says "Slip of the tongue." But just to make it clear to all the folks at home, Dale?

DALE: Puerto Rico is part of the United States. It has been since 1898. Puerto Ricans are American citizens. CUOMO: Now, what do you see here as why the President so persistently tries to make Puerto Rico an other?

DALE: It's - it's hard to get into his mind. I mean we know that he has personal animus to many of the politicians there. We know that he was aggrieved that he's - he's been accused of mishandling the response to Hurricane Maria.

We also know that he has gone after women of color and people of color on many occasions in a way that he hasn't always other people. It's hard to know which of those it is, in this particular case.

CUOMO: Well someone he should know is his father. Listen to what the father - the President said about his father.


TRUMP: My father is German, right, was German, and born in a - a very wonderful place in Germany. So, I have a great feeling for Germany.

My father's from Germany. Both of my parents are from the EU.

Don't forget both my parents were born in EU sectors, OK? I mean my mother was Scotland, my father was Germany.


CUOMO: Where was the father of the President born?

DALE: He was born in New York City. His - his dad was from Germany. But - but he was from New York City. And we have the birth certificate. For any - any Trump fans who demand birth certificates, we have the birth certificate of the President's father. He was born in New York.

CUOMO: All right, now, this one from today about vote tallies, and I think that this one is a really good example of what the President does when it comes to fact and fiction. Listen to this.


TRUMP: You're going to watch those vote tallies. You know, I keep hearing about the election and the - the various counting measures that they have.

[21:20:00] There were a lot of close elections that were - they seemed every single one of them went Democrat. It was close, they say the Democrat where there's something going on fella - you got to - hey, you got to be a little bit more paranoid than you are.

But we have to be a little bit careful because I don't like the way the votes are being tallied.


CUOMO: What? I had to create a third category for this. This goes on to the "What?!" you know, category of this is how - a full Alex Jones, this is full Alex Jones, he went on this where how do you even find a path through that palaver?

DALE: Well you just say that there's no evidence of - of deceitful, fraudulent counting of votes. You know, the President has made these allegations of voter fraud or fraudulent tabulation since before his election.

You know, he said there was going to be voter fraud. Then even after he won, he said, you know, 3 million people voted illegally in California. That didn't happen. And now he is insinuating fraud in the midterm tabulation.

None of it happened. This - this is simply a - a figment of the President's imagination, I think he uses as an excuse for what his party didn't do better in the midterms.

CUOMO: Straight up Alex Jones. I got to tell you. You picked the right job. You will never be bored. It's the full employment plan, checking this President on the facts.

Daniel Dale, always a pleasure and thank you.

DALE: Thank you.

CUOMO: All right, now, another thing in context. This is why the - look, the truth matters because if nothing else, it takes you to consistency on a position.

"Let it come out. Let the people see it. I was totally exonerated." You remember that? Came from more President. Now, less than two weeks after that, "Well, I don't know about full disclosure. I think giving it to Congress is ridiculous."

What changed? That's our Great Debate, next.








CUOMO: Why is our President getting shy about letting the Mueller report come out? Take a listen.


TRUMP: Let it come out. Let people see it. Nothing you give them, whether it's Shifty Schiff or Jerry Nadler.

Anything we give them will never be enough.

It's hypocrisy and it's a disgrace.


CUOMO: Two talking Trump, double-talking Donald, what is this fugazi promise? Is this like "I'll testify under oath. I can't wait." Sound strong but then hide.

Here's what I don't get in a matter of debate, what better closure is there than the truth coming out? That's the start of our Great Debate.




CUOMO: Angela Rye and Steve Cortes. Steve, why the change?


CUOMO: Really?

[21:25:00] CORTES: To me, this isn't binary. It's not either/or. He's - yes, because he's saying - correct, Chris.

He's saying, "Let's - let's be as transparent as possible." But at the same time he can also say but Shifty Schiff will never say that it's enough. I mean why can't both of those things be true? They can be.

And look, I have said for a long time, and I will still say, I want as much revealed as can possibly be revealed because the facts are exculpatory to the President.

I don't care about the details and the minutiae of this report. I don't think the American people do either. What they cared about was this false accusation, this - this insidious smear for the last two years that our President was a traitor.

We know now conclusively that he was not a traitor that he did not conspire that he was not beholden to a hostile foreign power. That's what matters. That's the conclusion that is going to be taken away by any reasonable person who's not obsessed with resisting this President.

CUOMO: By the way, I give you a point for using good language there. You didn't say there is no proof of collusion. We've talked on this show many times about how collusion is a behavior, not a crime.

But you stuck to the language of what we're dealing with - with the criminal context here, not a traitor, no crime of conspiracy, good for you. Because when you drift into the waters of collusion, you start creating the need to see more because then we have to understand the behavior, not just the criminality.

Angela, however, however, the President did say the notion of letting it come out now is "Ridiculous." Well that's not the same as saying let it all come out.


CUOMO: How do you take it?

RYE: Well I think that this President has a pattern and practice of saying one thing and then doing something very different, not in a matter of weeks, Chris, but sometimes in a matter of minutes. And so, it's interesting to me to hear Steve say that he is being transparent.

To me, this is the most inauthentic, the least transparent Administration in modern history. And I would challenge someone to come up with one that has been more - been least - less transparent.

I think the other thing that we really have to consider, I know we talked about collusion, but there also hasn't been enough wading into the waters of obstruction of justice and whether or not that existed.

Why can't we do that? We don't have the report.

I also would challenge Steve with Steve, who paid for the report? Because so often, your party likes to toe the line of fiscal conservatism and the - the price of responsibility and all of this greatness, but when it comes time to talk about who pays--

CORTES: Right.

RYE: --for these things, all of the sudden we get amnesia. There's a double standard that exists.

CORTES: No, Angela, wrong. I'm not disagreeing with you. I just said I want as much as can legally, as can practically, safely, there - you know, there are national security concerns, perhaps.

RYE: Oh.

CORTES: As much as can be revealed, I want it revealed. And, by the way, as long as we're talking transparency, you know what else I want to be transparent about? The FISA warrants under President Obama--

RYE: OK. So, I - you're - you're - no, time-out.

CORTES: --his DOJ, his FBI, and the way--

RYE: Steve, not today, not today.

CORTES: No, not time-out. I'm talking. And the way they took the national security--

RYE: No. But the problem is I - you - you - you took liberty in them--

CORTES: I'm talking, Angela.

RYE: No.

CORTES: The way they took - I'm talking--

RYE: Steve, you took liberty in the middle - in the middle of comments--

CUOMO: Hold on, hold on, I can't hear you. I can't hear you--

CORTES: The way they took the national security--

CUOMO: Lady and Gentleman--

CORTES: No, I get--

RYE: --to go down a road that we're not on.

CORTES: --I get to - I get to finish my point.

CUOMO: Lady and Gentleman, hold on, hold on.

RYE: You don't get to go--

CORTES: I get to finish my point.

RYE: --down a road. That's--

CUOMO: Hold on. Not--

CORTES: Yes, I do.

RYE: --not even the subject of the Great Debate, Steve.

CORTES: Yes, I do.

CUOMO: Guys - guys, I'll end it. I'll end it. Not on this show. This is disagreement with decency.

Steve's point is I want transparency on everything on Mueller, also FISA. Answer that. Do you want the same disclosure on FISA?

CORTES: Wait, I - I want to make - I want to make my own point, Chris. No--

CUOMO: No, that's--

CORTES: --I want more than just FISA. I want transparency on the--

CUOMO: --but that's the - but - but one - one step at a time.

CORTES: --entirety-- CUOMO: One step at a time.

CORTES: --on the entirety of the way that the Obama DOJ and FBI--

CUOMO: I understand.

CORTES: --was - was used that the national security mechanisms of the United States were used as a political weapon to attack partisan rivals in a way that hadn't happened--

CUOMO: That's an opinion. It's not something where there's an easy mode of disclosure.

CORTES: Of course, it's my opinion. In - in a way--

CUOMO: I know. But what I'm saying is it's not even (ph) disclosure. FISA is.

CORTES: --that hadn't happened since Nixon.

CUOMO: Let her answer. So, would you be in favor of the FISA documents coming out as well?

RYE: What I'm in favor of, right now, is what the subject of this Great Debate is, and that is the Mueller report. And that is what is amazing to me. It always goes back to President Obama.

It always goes back to anything, except for the President of the United States right now, his responsibility, all of the fact that there were so many criminals around him, so many people committing crimes, but yet and still, he must be innocent somehow. He must be ethical somehow.

We have - we're forgetting about the whistleblower that exists with the security clearances. So, we can talk about Obama.

I have never been the type of person who will absolutely be a "Yes person no matter what" on President Obama. I dare you to go back and check my record.

But I resent the fact that we're coming on to a program to talk about one issue that's dealing with this specific report, and somehow we're back into the Obama Administration for you to all to justify your nonsense.

CORTES: No. And--

RYE: So when you're talking about - I'm not done this time, Steve.

CORTES: No, it's not nonsense. I'm agreeing with you.

RYE: I'm not done this time.

CORTES: I am agreeing with you.

RYE: You had a fit to go down the road on FISA. Can you let me finish my point?

CUOMO: Finish.

RYE: Because I'll let you interject.

OK. My point is - is very simple. And that is it's not Adam Schiff, and - and, by the way, his name is Congressman because you called him Shifty Schiff at the beginning of this.

Congressman Schiff is saying all of these things you all may think are OK, I don't. And I think that history will be kind to the Members of Congress, to the American people, who stand up and say, "This is nonsense. It is horrible. And we have to do something about it. Period!"

CUOMO: You got a problem with one part of the argument, Steve that you should address it. FISA, you're guaranteed to have confidential information, classified information that's going to become relevant.


CUOMO: And that may come out. So, if you - you know that as a certainty going into it.


[21:30:00] CUOMO: So, the idea of well you should get the Mueller, except for that classified stuff, I don't think that's a fair caveat because you're asking for classified information to come out that you believe would be in your interest.

CORTES: No, I'm not. I'm--

CUOMO: So, you should want all of the classified information to come out.


CUOMO: Should you not?

CORTES: Chris, no. In both cases I'm saying - no.

I'm saying as much as can be safely - safely, meaning regarding the national security of the United States, as much as can be released in both cases. I want - I want sunlight and transparency on the Mueller report, and I want it on the Obama DOJ, and FBI and FISA.

I think that that the sunlight will be disinfecting. And I think also though what's important here, again, I don't frankly care about the details of the Mueller report, and I don't care if they're embarrassing slightly to the President.

What matters is the macro conclusion, which is was the President beholden to a foreign power? Was he a traitor? That's an insidious--

CUOMO: That's the criminal-- CORTES: --lie, a smear that have been--

CUOMO: That's the criminal threshold.

CORTES: --pushed for two years.

CUOMO: That's the criminal threshold.

CORTES: And - and that is a - right. And we - correct. And we have determined that that was demonstrably false. Thank you, next. Time for us now to get back to the business of this country--

CUOMO: Well we - we know that Mueller believed he couldn't make a case.

CORTES: --and the business of making America great again.

CUOMO: We need to know what he looked at and why.

And on obstruction, he did something that none of us saw coming. A guy who's in the business of making tough calls wouldn't make the tough call because there was so much proof on both sides.

Now you have to look at it because the threshold for responsible Presidential behavior ain't criminality. So, we need to know what was in there that made Mueller, the guy who was duty-bound to make a call, feel that he couldn't make--

CORTES: Right.

CUOMO: --a call.

CORTES: But as a prosecutor--

RYE: Chris?

CORTES: --he does not make a call of exoneration. Prosecutors charge or--

CUOMO: That's right. He shouldn't have said that.

CORTES: --they don't charge. It's - that - that is binary.

CUOMO: He shouldn't have said it.

CORTES: They don't have a third option.

CUOMO: He shouldn't have said it.

CORTES: I totally agree. And I think it was a--

CUOMO: And Barr shouldn't have said it too.

CORTES: --it was a cheap shot.

CUOMO: But they did. CORTES: It was a cheap shot for him to even include it--

CUOMO: I'm--

CORTES: --in the report. I think he's trying to look balanced.

CUOMO: Then why did - why did Barr include it?

CORTES: But it really was unprofessional and cheap.

CUOMO: That's what you got to figure out.

CORTES: I think he--

CUOMO: Why did Barr include it?

CORTES: I think he - no, no. Barr did to cover his rear-end because--

CUOMO: I don't know.

CORTES: --he didn't want to look like he was hiding it because Mueller said it. So, that's very easy to excuse Barr.

CUOMO: Well all we know is the--

CORTES: I think he felt duty-bound.

CUOMO: --the high ground for Angela on this is--

RYE: Well not everybody's read-end are covered because the report is not released.

CUOMO: That's right.

RYE: And the one thing that I think is important--

CUOMO: That's the high ground.

RYE: The one thing that I think is important--

CORTES: And I want it released.

RYE: OK. The one thing that I think is important is that the standard that you kept going to is whatever is legal, whatever we can possibly--

CUOMO: Right.

RYE: --do, that's still a subjective standard. I've had a security clearance. I understand that. So much of what is considered classified in this country is still subjective.

And the President still has the opportunity to claim Executive privilege. That also, Sir would be legal. So, you might have ran circles around somebody.

CORTES: Right.

RYE: But it wasn't me tonight.

CUOMO: All right, robust debate.

CORTES: No, look, the President also - by the way, the - the President also had the opportunity to fire Mueller, and he didn't. So, yes. The President could have stopped this--

CUOMO: That would've been a bad call.

CORTES: --a million ways from Sunday. He--

RYE: That's not possible (ph).

CUOMO: OK. But - but would have been a bad call--

CORTES: OK. But he could have. But the - the point is he didn't. The - the point is he didn't.

CUOMO: Right.

CORTES: He allowed the truth to be known. And the truth is he's not a traitor.

CUOMO: If he wanted the truth to be known, he would have gone under oath--

RYE: He did not allow the truth to be known.

CORTES: And not a criminal (ph), he's not beholden to a foreign power.

CUOMO: --and he would have done it on tape just like Bill Clinton did. If you want to go looking at President's past, they sent him that subpoena.

CORTES: Chris. Bill Clinton did because he had to.


CORTES: He was subpoenaed.

CUOMO: No. No.

CORTES: The President was - the - President Trump was never subpoenaed.

CUOMO: He did it well - but that's true. He wasn't subpoenaed. But he started this saying, "I want to go under oath. I want to talk to him. I have nothing to hide."

CORTES: And I think he didn't want to.

CUOMO: And he never did it. If he wanted to do it, he would do it.

CORTES: And I think his lawyers realized that that was fraught with peril--

CUOMO: If we know one thing about our President--

CORTES: --as it is for almost any defense.

CUOMO: --he does what he wants--

RYE: Definitely, he doesn't what he wants.

CUOMO: --every damn day. Steve Cortes, thank you for making the case.

RYE: Exactly it's the same (ph).

CUOMO: Angela Rye, as always.

RYE: Thank you.

CUOMO: The Senate's Majority Leader is publicly defecting from the President on one thing, the Border threats. But we have a Republican here. He says, "Sealing off our country is a good idea."

The Congressman makes his case, next.








CUOMO: The President says he has a solution to what's happening on the Border, which is to close the Border. Here's his suggestion to you, the American people.


TRUMP: If we don't make a deal with Congress, the Border is going to be closed, 100 percent.

And it can be changed in 45 minutes if they want to change it. Let's see what they do.


CUOMO: All right, no mention of the reality of what's happening on the Border, and I think there's a reason for that, and also, no real reflection of what he's being told by the men and women around him who understand the realities of the Border in the way the President arguably does not. However, he does have his supporters on this. Congressman Lance Gooden, Republican from Texas. Welcome to PRIME TIME, Sir.




CUOMO: Thank you for coming on to make the case

LANCE GOODEN, (R) U.S. REPRESENTATIVE FOR TEXAS'S 5TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT: Thanks for having me, Chris, and thanks for coming down to Texas yesterday.

CUOMO: We'll be down there plenty. The situation demands it.

GOODEN: Correct.

CUOMO: So does the job. So, make the case. Why is closing the Border a good answer?

GOODEN: You know closing the Border is not something anyone's excited about. The President has said several months ago "We need a wall."

The Congress didn't give him one. He shut down the government. They still didn't give him one. And he said I'm going to build it myself, declare an emergency, and he's doing that.

But what we've come to now is a situation where the Mexican government, countries south of Mexico have done nothing to police their Borders. And we've got caravans of folks coming in the country. We've got drugs. We've got out-of-control immigration policy.

And the President's simply saying, "We've got to shut down the Border if no one will do anything else." And I think he knows - I know he knows that this will be painful. This is not something anyone's excited about.

CUOMO: Right.

GOODEN: But it's come to this. And it's a sad state of affairs for our country.

CUOMO: Well let's start with the premise that the President knows it would be bad. He knows that now. He said last week it would be a boost to the U.S. economy. Was he lying or was he just ignorant?

GOODEN: I think the President believes that domestic products would be boosted, certainly the California avocado industry would be boosted. I've heard a lot about avocados this week.

But I think what the President believes is that this nation is at a crossroads, and we've got to do something. And the President isn't just making a statement to Congress when he says, "I'm going to shut the Border down." He's making a statement on behalf of this country to other nations that your policies of the past are not working, and we're prepared to do something even if it's painful today. Over the long term, it's going to be worth it.

CUOMO: Why does his DHS Secretary who was certainly loyal to him, right, she has certainly stuck her neck out in situations that - it didn't serve her best interest to support this President.

[21:40:00] She went out of her way to say Mexico has been a good partner, for the amount of resources they have, for what they're under in terms of their own government duress on the caravans, on the real crisis on the Border, which is kids and families that they have been helpful. That contradicts the President.

Who's right?

GOODEN: Well I think, politically, it's always popular to be nice to folks. And, you know, the - the people that run the Administration under the President are going to be positive.

There's no reason to pick a fight if they don't have to. And I think they also leave those big statements to the President. And they say, if the President wants to go out on a limb and shut down the Border then let's let him make that decision.

And he's prepared to take the bullet for the American people. He doesn't mind the bad press. He doesn't mind whether it's this show or any other saying how ignorant he is.

That's a - that's a belief that the media shares. He refers to them as the fake news. And the people I represent agree with him. But he's willing to do what's right for the American people.

CUOMO: I think that's the key. I think you just gave us the key, Congressman.

This sounds good to the base, sounds strength, sounds like strength, harshness as strength sells with a certain population of your state and many states around this country.

So, the President can say things--

GOODEN: Well I don't - I don't think this is necessarily for the base as much as it is--

CUOMO: --that may not be accurate but it maybe satisfying.

GOODEN: --for these other countries who are saying, "Come on up through our country. We'll let you into America. We're not policing our Borders."

Your - the last guest for Anderson Cooper was stating how countries south of Mexico have open borders, and all they have to do is get across Mexico, and then they're telling their citizens they can get into America. CUOMO: But what do you--

GOODEN: And let's not just talk about immigration. This is a drug issue as well.

One of the things you said, and many others, when we were talking during the shutdown, and people were saying, "We didn't need this Border wall," they said, "Well the Border wall is not going to solve your drug problem. All those will come through--

CUOMO: It won't.

GOODEN: --the port of entries."

CUOMO: It does.

GOODEN: We're talking about shutting down the ports of entries. We're going to shut down the Border if the President decides to--

CUOMO: Right. But what the experts will tell you is this.

GOODEN: --we'll just support him and say--

CUOMO: One--

GOODEN: The experts will tell you that what we've been doing isn't working.

CUOMO: Well--

GOODEN: Nothing.

CUOMO: --they'll say it's not working. They'll say it's complicated.

GOODEN: You were on the Border yesterday.

CUOMO: I've been at the Border dozens of times.

GOODEN: You were on the Border - I know. You were there yesterday.

CUOMO: That's not the issue.

GOODEN: There's a great video that you put on your show's website--

CUOMO: Right.

GOODEN: --just today or - in the talk - you were talking with an agent. Everything he said is true.


GOODEN: Congress hasn't agreed.

CUOMO: He's not the one who lies to the--

GOODEN: President hasn't agreed. CUOMO: --American people about the reality.

GOODEN: The - the - the Congress and the President, we need to work together. The President has said--

CUOMO: But you're doing nothing. That's what I want to ask you.

GOODEN: --he's going to shut down the Border--

CUOMO: But the brinkmanship--

GOODEN: --if that's what it takes. We've got to send the message--

CUOMO: --but the brinkmanship shouldn't be what it takes.

GOODEN: --to other countries that this won't work.

CUOMO: But it's not a message to the other countries.

GOODEN: We've got to send a message - we've got to send a message to Members of Congress, to other countries that--

CUOMO: Well that's different.

GOODEN: --well we're not doing is work--

CUOMO: That's different. Why--

GOODEN: --that what we're doing is not working.

CUOMO: And let's answer that last one, OK? Why aren't you doing anything? This is good to hear you here saying--

GOODEN: Well the Democratic House won't even acknowledge that we have a--

CUOMO: --we have to do something. You've said nothing on the floor.

GOODEN: --Border control issue.

CUOMO: But why don't you?

GOODEN: The Democratic leaders are not even--

CUOMO: Why don't you hold hearings to give the men and women on the Border who you say you care about--

GOODEN: I would love to hold a hearing.

CUOMO: --who are working in your state, to give them--

GOODEN: I - I don't know if you recall but--

CUOMO: --what they've asked for.

GOODEN: --the Democrats control the House, so I'm in a minority. CUOMO: I know. But why don't - but why don't you raise your voice?

GOODEN: But I'd love to have a hearing.

CUOMO: Why don't you say--

GOODEN: I'm - I'm on - I'm on this show right now. I said that every day.

CUOMO: --they need what they say they need, and they're not asking you for a fence.

GOODEN: We have got - we have got to do something in this country. But the first thing you've got to do is acknowledge that there's actually a problem. Democrats won't even acknowledge it.

CUOMO: That's not--

GOODEN: Privately, in the hallways of Congress, they'll say it to me. They'll say--

CUOMO: That is - it's not accurate or fair.

GOODEN: --Lance, we've got serious issue.

CUOMO: It's not accurate or fair.

GOODEN: But we can't talk about--

CUOMO: Not accurate or fair.

GOODEN: --this publicly because we're going to lose on it.

CUOMO: And here - and here's the political mix on this. What is the crisis? If you go down there and talk to your men and women, I know you do this. They'll say--

GOODEN: Sure. You were there yesterday.

CUOMO: But it - forget about going there. You know, it's - it's good to go. You don't have to go to know.

You will hear, "We cannot handle these kids and these families. We cannot handle them. Our rules don't allow us to. Our resources don't allow us to. We've been telling these people for months. Yes, fencing helps in certain ways. It doesn't help us with this, and they know it." And you've done nothing.

GOODEN: So, we should continue to encourage other countries--

CUOMO: You don't interest (ph). And my suggestion is--

GOODEN: --to send everyone this way? That doesn't make any sense.

CUOMO: No. Well you are encouraging it by cutting their funding.

GOODEN: We've got - we've got--

CUOMO: Right?

GOODEN: No, we've - we've got - we have - we've got to increase funding--

CUOMO: Because then it's only going to create more hardship and desperation, you'll get more flow.

GOODEN: --for Border security.

We've got to build meaningful walls, fences, whatever you want to call it, we've got to have this in the areas where crossings are easier. The President's not saying we need a wall from--

CUOMO: If you cut the - if you close the Border, the men and women there will tell you--

GOODEN: --from sea to shining sea.

CUOMO: --the migrants keep coming, Congressman.

GOODEN: That's because these other nations encourage them to. That's because this nation encourages them to.

CUOMO: And if you cut their funding, they'll encourage them more.

GOODEN: We need to close the Border. If the President believes that's what it takes, so we've got to send a message to other nations that enough is enough. We're not going to open our doors if you encourage other nations to send their--

CUOMO: I don't understand how punching yourself in the face encourages other people not to hit you. But Congressman, I appreciate your making it.

GOODEN: We punch ourselves in the face every day by not closing our Borders and doing something meaningful to solve the problem. We've got to fix it.

CUOMO: Making your Border hard to pass and processed effectively is different than closing it. And that's what the President says he's going to do. We'll see.

GOODEN: The President is prepared to send a message.

CUOMO: But I appreciate you making the case.

GOODEN: And I'm prepared to support him and I do.

CUOMO: And you did.

GOODEN: Thank you so much for having me on.

CUOMO: And I appreciate you taking the opportunity to do it on this show. GOODEN: Thank you.

CUOMO: Be well.

GOODEN: Thank you. Thank you.

CUOMO: Congressman Lance Gooden.

So, there was a lot to fact-check with the President, actually had stuff left over. And one is worth talking about because it's about windmills and cancer, but it also raises the question, where's the hot air really coming from on this.

D. Lemon, next.








CUOMO: The President says he's a counter-puncher. Now, he's taking a swing at windmills.


TRUMP: If you have a windmill anywhere near your house, congratulations, your house just went down 75 percent in value.


TRUMP: And they say the noise causes cancer. You tell me that one, OK? Rarr-rarr (ph).


CUOMO: It's - it's demonstrably false. Let's bring in D. Lemon. Now, half of this is just pufferies. It's just the President--


CUOMO: That's the sound of the windmill. The - the President saying your house went down 75 percent, all right--


CUOMO: --that's just him making stuff up. But the other part, I think is instructive. That's why I'm giving this to the audience for their time tonight. He doesn't like windmills. He doesn't like how they look off the coast of his golf course, so he attacked them.


CUOMO: He lost. So, he is bitter toward windmills.

LEMON: You're talking about his club in Scotland.


LEMON: Turnberry.


LEMON: Where he lost--

CUOMO: And then he got hit with costs.


CUOMO: Where he had to pay. So, he is angry at windmills.


CUOMO: And as we have learned, as you have learned, personally, if he doesn't like you or what you represent, this is what you get. You caused cancer.

LEMON: As they say, "You mad? You mad, bro?"

He's mad at - he's mad at windmills. And you're right. He said, and I'm paraphrasing here, basically he said, "I don't want to see windmills. I want to see the ocean," right? And he said, you know, all of these crazy things about - and windmills, which, again, there is no evidence there--

CUOMO: Right.

LEMON: --that shows it that there's anything about, so he's mad that - and - and so he lost, right?


LEMON: He sued them. He tried to get to block the windmill farm--


[21:50:00] LEMON: --off of his. And then, he lost legally, and then he had to pay the legal fees.

CUOMO: Right.

LEMON: So, guess what?

CUOMO: What? LEMON: He's a perfect, perfect guest (ph).

CUOMO: You have a windmill on the show tonight?

LEMON: Well close. I have a windmill on the show.

But I have someone who has a closer account of this who will tell us about the conspiracy theories and the lies. And if you want to get to know this President, you got to play golf with him. It's called Commander-in-Cheat, right?


LEMON: Yes. Rick Reilly, he says, How Golf Explains Trump. And--

CUOMO: You hear what the nickname was that they had for him on the course?

LEMON: What?

CUOMO: The guys who worked on the course?

LEMON: What?

CUOMO: They called the President Pele because they saw him kicking his ball back onto the green out of the fairway all the time. All right, look, you've heard me say before.

LEMON: I've spent two days walking in Scotland right on (ph)--

CUOMO: I have--

LEMON: --never saw much of anything. No Trump, no guards were - so that's the page in the book that talks about the windmills and - and the cost and all that and why he hates them so much. That author's going to join us.

So, go play some golf with him, you'll see, Commander-in-Cheat.

CUOMO: I'll tell you what. It is instructive. We keep seeing the same pattern of behavior. People should know it for what it is. D. Lemon--

LEMON: See you soon.

CUOMO: --I'll see you in a second.

LEMON: All righty.

CUOMO: All right, some news that might surprise the White House ahead. Turns out, Puerto Rico, not another country.

I know. I know, tough. That's a tough one. It's a tough one. But we're going to help them out because Americans need to stick together now more than ever. And we need to expose the divisiveness for what it is.

Just see it for what it is, and then you make any decisions about it that you want to. The case is next.








[21:55:00] CUOMO: Here's mainly what you'll see on the Border, mothers carrying kids to safety, father's doing the same, too many of them with bad info or acting on lies from cartels, coyotes or sometimes, just wishful thinking.

But the reality is while there are bad guys mixed in the overwhelming majority are people who are desperate for a better life, for them and their kids.

The President doesn't get this. But Border Patrol does.


RAUL ORTIZ, DEPUTY CHIEF PATROL AGENT, U.S. BORDER PATROL, RIO GRANDE VALLEY SECTOR: These folks have done nothing other than cross the Border illegally. And most of them are economic migrants. They're looking for a better way of life.


CUOMO: So, truth? It's a crisis. But it's not the one the President sold you on, not marauding hordes of MS-13 and drug, terrorists, mules. That's a gross exaggeration matched only by the notion that the fix to the fiction is as simple as a fence.

Now, I get why our President plays you like this. Scaring people and offering them a simple solution to what scares them sells. And this President knows xenophobia is contagious. That's why he uses it to demonize people who are not Americans and even those who are.

Isn't that what pummeling Puerto Rico is all about? Look at the barrage of BS tweets?

"Puerto Rico has already been scheduled to receive more hurricane relief funding than any place in history."

"The polls - the pols are grossly incompetent, spend the money foolishly or corruptly, and only take from USA."

"$91 billion to Puerto Rico and now the Dems want to give them more, taking dollars away from our farmers and so many others. Disgraceful!" "Cannot continue to hurt our farmers and states with these massive payments, so little appreciation."

Let's take it piece by piece. It's the U.S. territory. Calling it a place, he's otherizing it, right? That's what he's doing. That's what he does. For those who argue, this is POTUS not being great with words, his team is running the same game. Listen.


GIDLEY: With all we've done in that country where they've had a systematic mismanagement of the goods and services we've sent to them. You've seen food just rotting in the ports. Their Governor has done a horrible job. He's trying to make political hay in a political year.


GIDLEY: And he's trying to find someone to - to take the blame off of him--

JACKSON: So let me--

GIDLEY: --for not having a good grid and not having a good system in that country at all.

JACKSON: These are things--


CUOMO: White House Spokesman, Hogan Gidley referred to Puerto Rico as "That country" twice. He says it was a slip of tongue. Puerto Rico's been part of the U.S. since the 1800s.

Back to the President's tweets.

"$91 billion to Puerto Rico and now the Dems want to give them more, taking dollars away from our farmers and so many other. Disgraceful!"

"Can't continue to hurt our farmers, massive payments, so little appreciating."

Remember that part? I just want to keep the record straight. The $91 billion, it's not the whole story. Money for PR is not money stolen from farmers.

$11 billion has been sent to Puerto Rico, not $91 billion, a $11 billion. And $91 billion is the estimated cost of recovery over two decades. You see the difference? You see what he's spinning?

And for comparison, what they spend on Katrina, a $120 billion. You didn't have the same number of debt (ph). I'm not saying it wasn't worth it. I'm saying he's twisting it. He's misleading you, again.

But one thing seems pretty direct from and about our President. He's not about compassion. Have you ever heard him reach out about the nearly 3,000 dead in

Puerto Rico? If he does care, why does he deny the fact of the death there, bitterly, to the point of absurdity?

And then, when the deaths become a matter of fact, a reality, what does he do? He ignored them. "Lucky it was only 16. If it was death in Puerto Rico like Katrina that would have been really horrible, so we did great."

And when the death is worse than Katrina, he ignores it, just like he ignores these faces, all right? Why do we show you the faces? Because you're not going to sell fear on that kid's face, are you?

The President expressing compassion, being about the kids and their families, go look for it. Good luck. I'll bet you whatever you want. The real open question is why he doesn't do it.

Now, one obvious reason is that caring about kids, like I said, doesn't sell fear, doesn't sell a wall, does it? He knows that acknowledging the reality gives him ownership of it.

This system is failing, and it's on his watch. It's epic and it's dangerous. Our President can blame the Democrats. He can blame Mexico, migrants, blame anybody he wants.

"Wall is all." That was his mantra. He ignored the cries for different rules and resources that those in charge are really worried about. They've been telling - telling him this for months. They told me that themselves.

His Administration heard them, continues to not come close to answering those cries. That's the truth.

And here's the bigger truth. Just know what this is about. Harshness is strange for this President.

But it's not the only kind. And it's certainly not the signature trait of our country. It has not and will not solve the problems in Puerto Rico, the Border or beyond. Know that. And then judge it anyway you like.

Thank you for watching. CNN Tonight With D. Lemon starts right now.

LEMON: It's exhausting. We have to do it but it is exhausting to fact- check this President.

It's something that you, you know, I'm glad that there are news organizations, there are people who are devoted, that's their job, they're devoted to doing it because it is really exhausting.