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CNN RIGHT NOW
Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) Discusses Filthy Conditions Of Border Patrol Stations, Hope Hick's Testimony, Impeachment; Witness: I Murdered ISIS Prisoner, Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher On Trial; Trump: "We Were Locked And Loaded" Before I Called Off Iran Strike; CNN Examines Urgent Need For Internet Access In Rural U.S. Aired 1:30-2p ET
Aired June 21, 2019 - 13:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[13:30:00] REP. PRAMILA JAYAPAL (D), WASHINGTON: And I think that what we have to do now, because we haven't done -- we haven't declared a formal impeachment inquiry, is the administration is continuing to use the argument that we don't have legislative authority over this information. Now these are spurious claims. We believe courts will see it in our favor.
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN HOST: Can I -- I was to ask --
JAYAPAL: -- much longer process.
KEILAR: Does it feel futile as you're taking this approach without more abilities to get to the bottom of some of these things?
JAYAPAL: Well, it does feel frustrating to hear White House officials, lawyers, six lawyers, her personal lawyers, White House lawyers, continuing to object to the American people having transparency. That feels incredibly frustrating.
However, and I do believe, as you said, that I and almost 70 of my colleagues now, most of us on the Judiciary Democrat side, have come out believing that the White House is forcing us to open a formal impeachment inquiry so we can get the facts and follow them to our conclusion and use our full powers as quickly as possible.
This is a crisis. The Russians interfered in our elections. And the president is saying on national television that he's willing to take information if somebody offers it to him from a hostile foreign power. That is dangerous for all of us. And we need to resolve this immediately.
That's why I believe and I have come out for an impeachment inquiry. I think it helps us get there quickest.
KEILAR: Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, thank you for being on.
JAYAPAL: Thank you, Brianna.
KEILAR: A courtroom stunner. A witness at a Navy SEAL murder trial says he was the one who killed an ISIS prisoner, not the man on trial. But why prosecutors say they still will not drop the case.
[13:36:13] KEILAR: A shocking twist in the trial of a Navy SEAL accused of committing war crimes. But prosecutors say they're going to keep going here.
The government says it is not dropping murder charges against Chief Petty Officer Edward Gallagher despite a stunning admission from its lead witness, who has confessed to being the real killer. Gallagher is accused of killing a teenage ISIS prisoner while stationed in Iraq in 2017.
Then in this bombshell testimony, a SEAL team medic, Corey Scott, insisted that, although Gallagher stabbed the teen, he, Corey Scott, was the one who carried out the killing in what he believed was an act of mercy.
CNN's Dan Simon is in San Diego covering the trial.
Dan, tell us why Navy prosecutors are moving forward despite this testimony that could completely dismantle their case.
DAN SIMON, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, they feel like they have a solid case. There will be more prosecution witnesses, more SEALs who will testify against Eddie Gallagher.
But you have to wonder, Brianna, what was going through the prosecution's mind when one of their key witnesses in the middle of testimony drops this bombshell and says, no, it wasn't Eddie Gallagher who killed this ISIS fighter, it was me. We're talking about Navy SEAL Medic Corey Scott.
Let's break through what he said. We're talking about what happens in war time. And there's a lot of nuance here. So let's go through exactly what he said.
He was talking about what happened after all of this occurred after this ISIS fighter was captured. And he was testifying under immunity. And he told the military jury that he watched Gallagher stab this prisoner underneath the collarbone but it was not a fatal blow.
He then testified, when Gallagher walked away, he put his thumb over the prisoner's breathing tube. This is the exact quote: "I suffocated him. I held my thumb over his trach tube until he asphyxiated. I knew he was going to die anyway and wanted to save him from waking up to whatever would have happened to him."
He seemed to characterize this, Brianna, as a form of compassion, knowing that Iraqi soldiers would essentially torture this prisoner.
This is what the defense lawyer for Gallagher had to say after that incredible testimony.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TIM PARLATORE, ATTORNEY FOR EDWARD GALLAGHER: The best defense for Chief Gallagher is the truth. Today, the truth started to come out. What we've been saying for all this time, this is a shoddy investigation. No investigator, no prosecutor ever asked the question of, what is the cause of death.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SIMON: Well, of course, the prosecution was outraged by all of this. They accused Scott of lying on the stand, accusing him of essentially wanting to protect Gallagher, to which Scott replied, yes, I don't want to see him go to prison. He has a wife and he has a family.
Brianna, we'll send it back to you.
KEILAR: Dan Simon, thank you so much.
I want to bring in CNN Legal Analyst, Carrie Cordero.
How do you see this trial of Edward Gallagher now playing out?
CARRIE CORDERO, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: This is just an incredibly dramatic event to take place in an actual trial.
I think the key issue is going to be who the jury believes. It's going to come down to the reliability of the other evidence that the prosecutors have and the reliability in particular of the witnesses.
Do they believe this witness and what he's saying or do they think that he is just trying to take the blame now because he has immunity and so he actually can't be prosecuted and so he's helping his former colleague get off?
It will depend on the credibility, whether they weigh more heavily the credibility of the other witnesses who say that it was the defendant.
KEILAR: I want to ask you about Iran. The president tweeted today, he called off a strike against Iran with 10 minutes to go when he found out that 150 Iranian lives would be at stake.
You once signed an open letter before Trump took office saying that he was unfit to be president because of his lack of national security experience. I wonder, when you're looking, does this change your mind at all or to you is this demonstrative of your point?
[13:40:13] CORDERO: Yes. No, I think the way that this as unfolded over the last 24 to 48 hours in terms of when the drone was shot down was shot down by the Iranians to when we have the president tweeting about his national security decision-making underscores what I and dozens of other Republican former national security officials said, which is that he has a basic unfitness for handling national security matters.
I'm not questioning the outcome, which is that this strike did not occur by the United States, but where is the decision-making process that it would get to the point of 10 minutes before he's changing his mind. Didn't he ask the question beforehand, what are the potential consequences, what lives are at stake. Remember, this was an unmanned drone.
So there's a question as to whether or not --
CORDERO: What would be proportional. The one that was shot down was an unmanned drone.
I'm not saying there shouldn't be consequences, but there would not have been -- there was no loss of life. There would not have been the need for this rush decision to launch a potential strike.
It just calls into question how he makes decisions. And I think underscores his basic unfitness for being commander-in-chief.
KEILAR: Carrie Cordero, thank you for being with us.
A standoff is escalating in Oregon after the governor has sends police to find missing Republicans and bring them back to the capitol. Hear why.
Plus, the terrifying moments when a man rushes the TSA in the airport security line.
[13:46:12] KEILAR: CNN is investigating the digital divide when it comes to affordable high-speed Internet. Currently, there are 24 million Americans who still don't have broadband access, which makes it difficult to operate small businesses, use social media, or to surf the web to find information.
In a special report, CNN's Miguel Marquez travels to one rural community in Tennessee that is struggling to connect in the digital age.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Bob and Amanda Pritchard are raising three kids in a home they built. He's an assistant principal. She's starting her own business. One thing is missing.
(on camera): How necessary is the Internet, no matter where you are?
BOB PRITCHARD, TENNESSEE RESIDENT: It's essential. I mean, it's an essential piece of education. It's an essential piece of business.
Go ahead and top it off.
SIMON (voice-over): The Pritchards are just beyond the Internet's reach. Amanda is trying to start her own fresh-cut flower business.
(on camera): What could you do with more Internet? AMANDA PRITCHARD, TENNESSE RESIDENT: I could definitely reach more
people. And educational purposes, learning how to start a business and run a business.
SIMON: The Pritchards live in Cleveland, Tennessee, near Chattanooga, which has some of the fastest Internet in the country.
SIMON: Reverb Media used to be in Cleveland. Its owner, Clark Campbell, needed broadband. He had no choice but to move the company to Chattanooga.
CLARK CAMPBELL, OWNER, REVERB MEDIA: As much as I love Chattanooga, Cleveland is losing jobs because of new companies, like mine, that are leaving just for basic infrastructure and mainly Internet.
SIMON: Supplying Internet and now broadband nationwide long is a goal of the federal government.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You are going to have great, great broadband.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Today, high-speed broadband is not a luxury, it's a necessity.
SIMON: Since 2011, the FCC has spent billions building out broadband to rural areas. Still, some 24 million Americans don't have basic access to Internet.
(on camera): Where does Internet service come on the list?
KEVIN BROOKS, MAYOR OF CLEVELAND, TENNESSEE: Ironically, you would think public safety, education. I hear about broadband as much as I do as any other topic.
SIMON (voice-over): Cleveland's old wool mill is being refurbed into the Gritten Grace (ph) Vintage and Artisan market. Internet essential.
BROOKS: If we don't cross this digital divide, Cleveland, Tennessee, will plateau and cease to grow.
SIMON: Charter and AT&T, CNN's parent company, both say faster, cheaper Internet is rolling out in Cleveland and their service areas nationwide. When? Harder to say.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lift off.
SIMON: But with satellite and 5G wireless around the corner, maybe high-speed access will soon look differently. Maybe.
SANDY WALLACE, TENNESSEE RESIDENT: It's the best signal in this house.
SIMON: Sandy Wallace relies on a mobile hot spot. The wired Internet ends about 300 yards from her home.
(on camera): This is a utility?
WALLACE: Absolutely it's a utility. Absolutely. You've got to have it to function now.
SIMON (voice-over): Joining the digital economy for many, not close enough or soon enough.
SIMON: So there are a whole bunch of places like Cleveland, Tennessee, across the country. When will they all get access to broadband? Not any time soon. 5-G will roll out in the cities first. It will probably take years to get everywhere else.
The satellite, it is still unknown whether it will be reliable enough and be cost effective so that mom-and-pop shops can actually afford it - Brianna?
KEILAR: Great report, Miguel. Thank you so much.
MARQUEZ: Thank you.
KEILAR: Miguel Marquez with that.
[13:49:41] Why did a White House official once appear on a podcast hosted by a white supremacist who believes that some races are scientifically proven to be inferior to others? The "KFILE" report, ahead.
KEILAR: Next month marks the 50th anniversary of the first footsteps on the moon. CNN's newest original film, "APOLLO 11," takes you inside one of humanity's greatest feats, with never-before-seen footage and audio from NASA's most celebrated mission, forever making Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins into household names.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[13:54:11] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Neil and Buzz, the president of the United States is in his office now and would like to say a few words to you, over.
UNIDENTIFIED ASTRONAUT: That would be an honor.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go ahead, Mr. President, this is Houston, out.
RICHARD NIXON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Hello, Neil and Buzz. I'm talking to you by telephone from the White House. And this has to be the most historic telephone call ever made from the White House.
I just can't tell you how proud we all are of what you have done. For every American, this has to be the proudest day of our lives, and for people all over the world, because of what you have done. The heavens have become a part of man's world.
And as you talk to us from the sea of tranquility, it inspires us to redouble our efforts to bring peace and tranquility to earth.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KEILAR: "APOLLO 11" premieres Sunday night, at 9:00 Eastern, here on CNN.