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CNN TONIGHT

President Trump Tough On Others But Not On Vladimir Putin; A One-On-One Interview With General Michael Hayden; Soccer Star Doubles Down On Criticism Of Trump; One-On-One Interview With Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Aired 11a-12a ET

Aired June 28, 2019 - 23:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[23:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DON LEMON, CNN HOST: This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon.

It's about noontime, Saturday in Osaka, Japan, where President Trump is attending the final hours of the G20 summit. Among his meetings, a sit down with China's President Xi Jinping about the trade war between the two countries.

Earlier, the president met one-on-one with Russian leader Vladimir Putin where he made a mockery of Russia's interference in our elections.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, will you tell Russia not to meddle in the 2020 election?

(CROSSTALK)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Yes, of course I will. Don't meddle in the election. Don't meddle in the election please.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: And later, a CNN TONIGHT exclusive, the first interview with the former CIA director General Michael Hayden since his stroke last November. He talks openly about what he experienced that day, his road to recovery and some of the stunning developments since then.

Listen to his reaction to President Trump saying that he would accept dirt on a political rival from a foreign power.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: I just want to get your reaction to the president saying he would take negative political information from a hostile foreign country.

MICHAEL HAYDEN, FORMER DIRECTOR, CIA: Yes. It's unbelievable. I watched that and actually Twittered on that. The American president would do that? It's truly unbelievable. LEMON: He said it would be ridiculous to tell the FBI.

HAYDEN: Yes, I know. And the FBI thinks no, we want that to happen.

LEMON: Well, Christopher Wray said --

HAYDEN: Right.

LEMON: -- that the president shouldn't do it.

HAYDEN: Right.

LEMON: He should call the FBI, he said Christopher Wray was wrong.

HAYDEN: Yes, and it's a remarkable thing, isn't it?

LEMON: How do you think that the people in the intelligence community what does that do?

HAYDEN: It's awful. It's awful. Now, the next day they go to work and do the best they can. But, you know, that's really hard.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: It's good to see him.

FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: Great.

LEMON: It's good. It's great. Fareed is here. We'll get to him in a second, but it is so great to see him. You have to watch the full interview with General Michael Hayden ahead. It's his first since he suffered a stroke, as well as more of my interview with presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg.

But first, President Trump wrapping up meetings with world leaders at the G20 in Japan. Let's bring in Fareed Zakaria now, the host of Fareed Zakaria GPS. Fareed, thank you so much. Again, I know that you are going to run later. I know that you are --

(CROSSTALK)

ZAKARIA: I'm a fan (Inaudible) with Michael Hayden.

LEMON: The president was surprised -- he's surprised everyone tonight with the Twitter invitation on North Korea dictator Kim Jong-un. And I just want to read it. He said, "If Chairman Kim of North Korea sees this, I would meet him at the border/DMZ just to shake his hand and say hello."

So, he says the idea came to him. He always seems that he is enthralled by Kim. What's so -- I mean, it sounds like some sort of strange desperation, what's going on here?

ZAKARIA: It feels exactly like that. It feels like the --

(CROSSTALK) LEMON: Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?

ZAKARIA: It feels like how not to try to get high school date. Right? Rule number one, don't seem too eager. The problem here is twofold. One, Donald Trump has decided that this is his path to a Nobel Peace prize. I'm convinced of it. That's why he exaggerated the crisis then tried to swoop in as the savior.

When that didn't work, you know, he tried doing another summit. He is desperate to somehow make this work. And in doing that, he is revealing to the North Koreans that he is too eager to get a deal. And that is the second problem.

This is diplomacy 101, don't seem so eager. Trump seems to think that if only he and Kim could get together, they could have a deal. No, the North Koreans have very deep structural reasons why they don't want to give up their nuclear weapons. They view it as the insurance to keep this regime alive. You know, having a nice meeting at the DMZ with Donald Trump is not going to change that.

LEMON: Good pictures for him though.

ZAKARIA: Well, it's good pictures for him but he needs to understands that it is going to fail if the goal is to denuclearize North Korea. You know, foreign policy is not a branch of psychotherapy.

LEMON: The president is on the world stage, you know, he's joking. He's meeting with Vladimir Putin he's joking about the issue of, you know, interfering in our election, not taking it seriously. Does this make him look weak?

ZAKARIA: I think what it does is it allows the Russians to look strong, certainly, because Russia is doing this not just in the United States, it's doing it in Ukraine massively, it's doing it in Western Europe.

[23:04:59] And if the president of the United States isn't willing to stand up and stand up against that kind of interference and that kind of the desecration of democracy, what does it say to the Russians? They have a green light.

He said something worse or at least as bad, Don. He made fun of the journalists in the room. He said they're all fake news and then he looks at Putin and says "you don't have this problem." We do. He's right in the sense. Putin does not have the problem of a free press; he's shut it down.

I think the committee on protection of the journalists estimates that 25 journalists have been killed in Russia in the last few couple of years.

So, to make fun of these issues that are deadly serious of an adversary of the United States, a dictatorship that is using brutal means to kill journalists to try to desecrate democracy, it makes the Russians stronger, and it makes the cause of liberal democracy weaker. LEMON: Especially in light of what happened with Jamal Khashoggi,

right. And I want to ask you about this picture. This is a photograph. President Trump in between Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Turkish President Erdogan. What do you think when you see this from the G20?

ZAKARIA: Well, he has always seemed to be more comfortable with the strong men. That's what I'm always struck by. Is that whenever you see him in conversations with the Democratically elected leaders of our western allies, the chancellor of Germany, the president of France, the prime minister or England, there's always some, you know, there is bad blood, there is feuding. He is making fun of them.

He's -- when he is talking to Putin, he is folly. When he talks to the ruler of Saudi Arabia which is an absolute monarchy, he is folly. He seems to like the company of the strong men.

LEMON: I want to talk to you about this, your latest special report. And they're always fascinating. It's called state of hate, explosion of white supremacy, the explosion of white supremacy. You spoke with a guy, his name is Jared Taylor. He is a white nationalist, widely known as the godfather of the alt-right. He is euphoric, but they are also becoming widespread here in the U.S. and abroad. Let's watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(CROWD CHANTING)

JARED TAYLOR, WHITE NATIONALIST: There still plenty of white people, they deserve a future. Not to be simply melted away in this multiracial mishmash that they did not choose.

ZAKARIA: Jared Taylor is a white nationalist quite literally. He does not advocate violence, but he does want to create a whites only version of America.

TAYLOR: I am not at all talking about the entire United States becoming white, I'm talking about simply a portion of it becoming white.

ZAKARIA: So, the whites would secede?

TAYLOR: Yes, perhaps. I can assure you that more and more white people agree with me all the time. They don't want to become a minority.

ZAKARIA: Repeatedly he voices the biggest fear of the white supremacy movement.

TAYLOR: Should I want my people to disappear? It is entirely profoundly moral to resist that kind of replacement.

ZAKARIA: Replacement. A word has become a call to arms.

(END VIDEOTAPE) LEMON: I mean, you are a graduate of Yale and so is he, how does someone who has benefited from that type of education have those sorts of views become -- how does he become a white supremacist, and what is he afraid of?

ZAKARIA: I think a lot of it is fear. You know, what has happened with this movement is two things. One, there has been the rise in census reports that say, you know, by 2040 the United States is going to be a majority of the country will be minorities.

Minorities are becoming larger and larger, and for some reason this is provoking a kind of almost existential fear. In a small group, one has to say a small group of whites, but they are growing.

LEMON: Yes.

ZAKARIA: And I think this is the important part to remember. There were 50 people, 50 Americans died because of the white supremacist violence last year, and one because of Islamic terror.

LEMON: Yes. Fareed, thank you very much. I appreciate it. And make sure you watch Fareed Zakaria investigate -- as he investigates the deep reasons why white supremacy is showing its face. CNN's special report, the state of hate, the explosion of white supremacy. It airs Sunday night at 8 p.m. right here on CNN.

And we've got a CNN exclusive tonight coming up. A CNN TONIGHT exclusive coming up. The first interview with the former CIA Director General Michael Hayden since his stroke last year. He talks about what happened to him, his recovery and his family and the state of the nation and the world. That's next.

[23:10:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: Now, we have a CNN TONIGHT exclusive. My sit-down interview with the former CIA director General Michael Hayden. I talked to him at his home earlier this week. It is his first interview since his stroke last November.

In a wide-ranging conversation, we talked to him about what happened that day, about his recovery, about the state of our nation and the world over the past seven months. And if there is one thing you'll learn from our conversation, is that you can't keep a good man down.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: So good to see you.

HAYDEN: Good to see you again.

LEMON: How are you doing?

HAYDEN: Better.

LEMON: Yes?

HAYDEN: A lot better.

LEMON: So, let's talk about what happened.

HAYDEN: Sure.

LEMON: Take us through what happened that morning?

HAYDEN: Well, Jeanine was in the basement doing exercises, and I was actually right there. And suddenly, I fell, and I couldn't get up. Nothing would happen to me. And so, I called Jeanine, but she couldn't hear me.

And so finally, after three or four times getting up, I couldn't do it, I fell frankly at the bottom of the stairs. I just fell down to Jeanine.

LEMON: You went all of the way down the stairs?

HAYDEN: Halfway down the stairs.

LEMON: Halfway down the stairs?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: Wow.

HAYDEN: I called and called and finally she answered and said, what's wrong, what's wrong, and then she saw me.

[23:15:01] LEMON: Were you worried in those moments? Can you remember if you were going to make it?

HAYDEN: You know, I didn't. No, I didn't. Later on, I did, OK, in the hospital. But not right now, because everything was a blur.

LEMON: A blur?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: And had Jeanine not been here?

HAYDEN: An hour after she was gone. And so, I was there three or four or five hours, and I would not have her to help.

LEMON: She had an appointment an hour later?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: And you would have been here by yourself.

HAYDEN: That is exactly correct.

LEMON: LEMON: Do you remember what Jeanine did? Did she immediately call 911?

HAYDEN: Yes. Exactly. LEMON: You could hear?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: Was she talking to you?

HAYDEN: Yes, but I can't remember the details, but she was talking to me. And then the people came very quickly.

LEMON: Being in the hospital.

HAYDEN: Sure.

LEMON: In your recovery.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: What was that like?

HAYDEN: Well, first of all, two months.

LEMON: Two months.

HAYDEN: Yes. And it's hard and you go from the very basic things. And the people were wonderful. OK? And they are patient. God, thanks God for that.

LEMON: How frustrating is it?

HAYDEN: Very frustrating. And by the way, there's some things that are not coming back, OK. And so, I have to deal with that. OK?

LEMON: Are you talking about that?

HAYDEN: Sure. I -- this -- well, parts of my right here is very difficult. And so, I don't know whether it will be back later on or not. And so, I try. I exercise. But, you know, move on. I'll do the best I can.

LEMON: And you have a brace. Do you wear a brace?

HAYDEN: I have one brace, yes, on my foot.

LEMON: And has that come back your foot?

HAYDEN: Yes. Watch this.

LEMON: Wow.

HAYDEN: Which is like amazing. Three months ago, I couldn't do that at all, but here, there you go.

LEMON: So, you are on a recumbent bike, who do you think you are?

HAYDEN: Well, there are some people who -- Gabby Gifford was in to say hi to me, and -- (CROSSTALK)

LEMON: You said say hi to you, but she -- they visited you, right?

HAYDEN: Yes. That's exactly right.

LEMON: And they saw you the day you were on the bike.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: And they said, well --

HAYDEN: I have a bike here. You can have that one.

LEMON: Yes.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: So, you are a lefty now?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: You weren't a lefty before?

HAYDEN: I'm bad left-handed.

LEMON: But your dad was a lefty.

HAYDEN: Because -- yes, that's right.

LEMON: So that helped you out?

HAYDEN: Yes. And now everything is there. I am going, OK, that's going to be it.

LEMON: Can you write?

HAYDEN: Sometimes, a little bit like my name. I can do that now.

LEMON: Right.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: Listen, I think that you still have your higher level of thinking.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: You still have your analytical abilities.

HAYDEN: I can try.

LEMON: But none of that, and the reasoning abilities and all of that.

HAYDEN: Yes, that's right.

LEMON: But physically, it's an issue.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: Is it frustrating because you know what you want to say.

HAYDEN: God, yes.

LEMON: But it doesn't come out the right way.

HAYDEN: That's exactly right. Now Jeanine is very good at saying what I am trying to say, the kids are good. But people come and talk to me, and it's hard for me to do it.

LEMON: Well, I know what you are saying now.

HAYDEN: yes. And for example, the DNI would come every now and again, and we'd talk and would go all of the time, but it's hard for other people to do that.

LEMON: The DNI?

HAYDEN: Jim Clapper.

LEMON: He would come over.

HAYDEN: Yes. All the time.

LEMON: Yes. We talk as well.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: We have this running conversation about you in text message. How is he doing.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: What's going on. You know, it's a frightening experience.

HAYDEN: Yes, it.

LEMON: What do you say to people who have dealing with this, either they have suffered a stroke.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: Or a family member or loved one or friend, what do you say to them?

HAYDEN: Well, you know who you love. That's really important. The wife and kids and family. That's really, really important now. The kids come over a lot. And they do a lot of things for me now.

LEMON: Including your grandson?

HAYDEN: Yes. All of them. The little grandson, the little one. That's right. Because, I can't read really well. And so, he'll help me with the letters.

LEMON: So now, did you, were you teaching him at one point?

HAYDEN: Yes, of course.

LEMON: And now he is teaching you.

HAYDEN: Exactly.

LEMON: How old is he?

HAYDEN: One, two, three, four, five.

LEMON: He's five.

HAYDEN: Five. I got to do that in order to do that.

[23:20:02] LEMON: Yes.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: So, you know, obviously, Director Clapper wants, visit -- visited you, your friends, he wants to have you back.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: General, there are other people who want to have you back, I would love to have you back on CNN.

HAYDEN: Thank you. I would love that.

LEMON: We would love that. And many important voices would love to have you back, General Hayden.

HAYDEN: Thank you.

LEMON: So, we're going to get Mrs. Hayden to come in and share some of those voices. Do you mind?

HAYDEN: OK. That would be great. Thank you.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ZAKARIA: Mike, you are the great -- the greatest guest that we can get, because you are always smart, you are always articulate, you're always wise which is even more important than being smart.

And you have always been a pleasure to deal with. So, from my point of view, we just, you know, you are the A-team, and we just need to get you back as soon as we can.

JAMES CLAPPER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: The role model he is setting is really courageous and inspiring. And that has actually deepened the already great respect and admiration that I have always had for Mike Hayden. Also, I'd like to say a word about the pillar in the family right now is his wife, Jeanine, who is absolutely phenomenal.

NICHOLAS BURNS, FORMER AMBASSADOR TO NATO: Welcome back. Mike and I worked together in the George H.W. White House --

(CROSSTALK)

HAYDEN: That's right.

BURNS: -- that's how old we are, but I've always admired him, I've admired his intelligence, his patriotism, the fact that he is great human being. I know he's had a tough time.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: Jake Tapper here. General Hayden, I just wanted to say I'm thrilled to hear that you are doing better. We've all been concerned about you. We missed you on The Lead and we look forward to seeing you soon.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: You're such an important part of our CNN family, and we're looking forward to seeing so much more of you very soon including right here in the Situation Room. Your expertise is so vital with so much news going on right now.

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN ANCHOR: General Hayden, welcome back to CNN. So glad you are doing so much better. And I'm looking forward to getting yet another opportunity to keep grilling you on the issues.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: What do you think when folks do that? I know you don't like to be feted over.

HAYDEN: Yes. Well, I can do it a little bit.

LEMON: So, you enjoy that?

HAYDEN: Yes. Very much.

LEMON: It's nice to be wanted. Right?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: You know, Director Clapper calls you the pillar of the family, and I notice the times that we've been talking and you've been very instrumental and you've been helping him out. What do you think when he says that? Do you feel like you are the pillar right now?

JEANINE HAYDEN, MICHAEL HAYDEN'S WIFE: I feel like I have to be for sure. But, you know, I'm just doing what I signed up for. All of those many years ago, in sickness and in health. And so, it's just the way it is.

LEMON: What do you want people to know about this experience?

J. HAYDEN: Well, here's one thing. If you have conceded to your spouse all the financial stuff, sit down and get it all figured out now. Because, you don't know what's going to happen tomorrow and that's one of the things I have had to learn. Big time.

LEMON: Yes, but that's an important practical thing, because I remember when my father passed and my mom, there were things that she had never seen, and you know, mortgages and all sorts of things that she had to sort of find her way through it.

J. HAYDEN: Right.

LEMON: And I actually think that's really good advice.

HAYDEN: Jeanine and the kids are, that's everything to me. And so, they from very first moment, she was there, and the kids were there to meet me. And so, with that, I can do anything.

LEMON: With your family and your loved ones.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: Thank you, Mrs. Hayden, I appreciate that. So, now that we've talked about your experience and I appreciate you sharing it. Let's talk some issues.

HAYDEN: OK.

LEMON: Let's do what we did in the good old days.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: And not so long ago. We'll talk about world issues.

HAYDEN: OK.

LEMON: When we come back.

HAYDEN: OK. Thank you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

[23:25:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: So, we're back now with General Michael Hayden. Let's talk issues.

HAYDEN: OK.

LEMON: Let's start with Iran.

HAYDEN: OK.

LEMON: So, you know, tensions are very high with Iran. It's been escalating. The president ordered a strike on Iran after they shot down an American drone.

HAYDEN: Yes. LEMON: And then he pulled back two minutes before they were supposed to do it. Was that the right move?

HAYDEN: Yes, of course it was. The president did something dramatic and then stopped.

LEMON: And then stopped. you don't think he was going --

HAYDEN: No. I don't --

LEMON: -- go through with it.

HAYDEN: There's lots of things going on, right? And a lot of them are not good. All right? But why a year ago?

LEMON: You mean pulled out of the Iranian agreement?

HAYDEN: Exactly.

LEMON: Yes.

HAYDEN: And now what's going to happen now?

LEMON: Right. So let's talk about the people who are -- and people you know.

HAYDEN: Right.

LEMON: And who you respect.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: General Mattis.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: He resigned.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: General Kelly resigned.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON: General McMaster too. These are experienced military men. Are you confident that the president is getting measured advice the advice he needs?

HAYDEN: No, of course not. Now there are a couple that are hawks, OK. I get it. But most of them, particularly in my profession they're saying, no, let's be calm, let's be calm.

LEMON: Why would all of these people, and as you know, everyone said, well, listen, he is surrounded by really good people.

HAYDEN: Yes. LEMON: He is getting good advice. That gives me comfort at night.

HAYDEN: And now they are gone, right?

LEMON: What does that mean for us?

HAYDEN: Well, I don't know. Seriously, I don't know. And we are getting into the third year of the presidency, and things are going to happen, and I'm afraid of that.

LEMON: I want to talk about Russia now.

HAYDEN: yes.

LEMON: You wrote a book; the book is called "The Assault on Intelligence: American National Security in the Age of Lies."

[23:30:00] I just want to get your reaction to the president saying he would take negative political information --

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): -- from a hostile foreign --

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): -- country.

HAYDEN: It's unbelievable. I watched that and actually twittered on that. The American president would do that? It is truly unbelievable.

LEMON (on camera): He said it would be ridiculous to tell the FBI.

HAYDEN: Yeah, I know. And the FBI thinks, no, we want that to happen.

LEMON (on camera): Christopher Wray said that the president shouldn't do it.

HAYDEN: Right.

LEMON (on camera): Should call the FBI.

HAYDEN: Right.

LEMON (on camera): He said Christopher Wray was wrong.

HAYDEN: Yeah. It's a remarkable thing, isn't it?

LEMON (on camera): How do you think people in Intelligence Community -- what does that do?

HAYDEN: It's awful. It's awful. Now, the next day they go to work and do the best they can, but, you know, that's really hard.

LEMON (on camera): So you know that 2020 election is upon us --

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON (on camera): -- right now. Do you think that we are doing enough so that there won't be any interference?

HAYDEN: No, not at all. Now, people are trying really hard, all right, but the president has to be involved, and the president is not involved.

LEMON (on camera): So it came out in the Mueller Report and talked about the number of different ways that Russia not only tried to interfere, but did interfere with our election. Volume one of the Mueller report concludes that Russia interfered in the 2016 election, but also found insufficient evidence to charge anyone in the Trump campaign --

HAYDEN: That's correct.

LEMON (on camera): -- with conspiracy.

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): Was that surprising to you?

HAYDEN: No. Well, I don't -- I didn't know, all right, but Bob Mueller is a great man. And so if he is looking at that and saying, no, they didn't do it, he wouldn't do it.

LEMON (on camera): Yeah. He laid out 10 instances of possible obstruction --

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): -- and wrote, "While this report does not conclude that the president committed a crime and also does not exonerate him."

HAYDEN: That's correct.

LEMON (on camera): Do you believe the president obstructed justice?

HAYDEN: To me, yes, he did.

LEMON (on camera): Can we talk about the attorney general?

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON (on camera): OK. Do you think the attorney general misled the country when he came out with his -- with the assessment letter and then his times in front of the media telling people what was in the report?

HAYDEN: Yes, I do. That is very clear. You know, he should have been -- how do I say it? An arbiter, OK, that he was plainly the president, and so he didn't do things that I think were necessary.

LEMON (on camera): Do you believe he is acting as a president's attorney and not the attorney general for the country? HAYDEN: Yes, I do.

LEMON (on camera): Do you think he's biased?

HAYDEN: Yes, I think he's biased.

LEMON (on camera): And he should have just said this is what is in the report.

HAYDEN: Report and that's it.

LEMON (on camera): Not qualified.

HAYDEN: Absolutely correct.

LEMON (on camera): Do you think that Mueller should have fought harder to interview the president and ask him direct questions about obstruction?

HAYDEN: I would like that, yes.

LEMON (on camera): Do you think Mueller made it clear that the Congress, if they wanted an impeachment, that they should take it up --

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON (on camera): -- in his finding in the Mueller report?

HAYDEN: Yes, I think so. That's very clear to me.

LEMON (on camera): Do you think Congress should?

HAYDEN: They could do something. There are some things that can be done. But right now, it is the next election.

LEMON (on camera): It is not impeachment?

HAYDEN: No.

LEMON (on camera): Nancy Pelosi is saying that.

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): She doesn't believe it.

HAYDEN: I think so.

LEMON (on camera): Do you agree with her?

HAYDEN: Yes. By the way, that's a judgment. How do I say it? Maybe it should, but it won't happen. So let's just get on with it now.

LEMON (on camera): Without the willingness though to take on this political risk -- I mean, it seems like it emboldens the president.

HAYDEN: Yes, it does.

LEMON (on camera): Is it allowing him to get away with what is -- what could be illegal behavior?

HAYDEN: Yes, it is. But, you know, the Americans have to decide, all right? We'll decide in a year and about that election.

LEMON (on camera): Right.

HAYDEN: OK? We will decide. Maybe the America wasn't as good as I thought it was.

LEMON (on camera): By making this political calculation that you said not to go with impeachment, is that saying that the president is above the law?

HAYDEN: It appears to be.

(LAUGHTER)

HAYDEN: All right? I wouldn't think that was true, but it is now.

LEMON (on camera): The only Republican so far who has spoken out, Justin Amash.

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): Do you see that changing?

HAYDEN: No, I don't. It is amazing, isn't it?

LEMON (on camera): It is pretty amazing.

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): Let's talk more about 2020, because you are saying that the way that we have to deal with this is through the election, right?

HAYDEN: Yeah.

LEMON (on camera): They have a chance to either re-elect this president knowing full well what they are getting or remove him from office.

HAYDEN: Yeah.

[23:35:00] LEMON (on camera): Is this a test of who Americans are?

HAYDEN: To me, yes, it is. Now, there are other people that are good Americans who think no, not at all, all right? But I do. I do. We see things that we have never seen before, that we have never seen before. And so we have to decide. We have an election and then we'll decide.

By the way, if the president is defeated and the next president is OK and if I on -- on your show, I will still be a lot of things I don't want them to be, OK? You know, there are things that no, I don't think that's right or that's right. That's fine. But this is different. This is different.

LEMON (on camera): I always say this is different. And I'm not sure people understand that when I say that. It doesn't come from a partisan place.

HAYDEN: No, no, no.

LEMON (on camera): This is not about right versus left.

HAYDEN: Right. That's right.

LEMON (on camera): This is about truth versus false.

HAYDEN: Exactly.

LEMON (on camera): And reality versus alternative reality.

HAYDEN: Yes.

LEMON (on camera): And we all have kind of shared (ph) reality, otherwise.

HAYDEN: The American movement is that fundamental belief that shared reality is our destiny. And if we can't do that, what becomes of us?

LEMON (on camera): You write this and this is CNN.com. It says, "I still feel a sense of wonder and joy at the spring blossoms and the gorgeous green trees that line my backyard today. The world, filled with all its challenges and struggles, is also still filled with an abundance of love and joy. These things I know."

We are still surrounded by love and joy. That is very powerful and important to remember.

HAYDEN: Yes, indeed.

LEMON (on camera): Why did you write that?

HAYDEN: Because, as I said before, my family is the most important thing. I look at them and say, wow, that is a very good thing. Yeah, that's true.

LEMON (on camera): Thank you.

HAYDEN: Thank you.

LEMON (on camera): You are an amazing human being. Thank you so much. I really appreciate it, general.

HAYDEN: Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

LEMON (on camera): Thank you.

HAYDEN: OK. (END VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: What a privilege -- it really was -- to sit down with General Hayden, and I am looking forward to seeing him back in action soon.

Coming up, the U.S. women soccer team beating France in the World Cup today, but what has got the country's attention is the star of the game doubling down on her criticism of the president.

[23:40:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: The U.S. women's soccer team beating France 2-1 in the World Cup match tonight. Both goals were scored by Megan Rapinoe, who you might remember said that she wouldn't go to the White House, she said in a more explicit terms, if the U.S. won the whole tournament.

She is in expletive when she said that, and that prompted the president to tweet this, saying, "Megan should win first before she talks. Finish the job."

So let's discuss now. Jemele Hill is here. Her latest piece for The Atlantic is entitled, "Megan Rapinoe Is On to Him, and Trump Can't Stand It." I wonder what you mean by that headline. That was -- I'm just being sarcastic.

(LAUGHTER)

LEMON: Hello to you. Listen, let's talk about it. The U.S. women soccer team is one step closer to the White House invitation, win or lose, tweeted by the president. A number of Rapinoe's teammates support her comments. How do you think this is going to play out, Jemele?

JEMELE HILL, STAFF WRITER, THE ATLANTIC: Honestly, I would really be a little surprised if that invitation never came. I mean, I'm just basing this of what has been a particular trend with Donald Trump. He usually does not invite teams where he knows he will get a negative response or overwhelming negative response.

It kind of reminds me of the Golden State Warriors. Once their criticism started to be more known, once Steph Curry said that he didn't want to go at all, then he rescinded an invitation to a team that didn't plan on being there to begin with.

I mean, after that, he hasn't extended any invitations to any NBA teams. I don't think he extended it to Toronto. We saw in women's college basketball. Baylor was the first women seemed to go. It took so long with South Carolina. I think there was some question there about whether or not they would go when the Gamecocks won. The women's college basketball --

LEMON: I don't have all night, Jemele, to name people who didn't go there.

(LAUGHTER) HILL: Because that's the way it is these days, Don. I mean, look, when you're somebody like him and you're constantly attacking groups who are vulnerable and marginalized, you cannot be shocked that they don't want to sit there and eat cheeseburgers and Chick-fil-A and Sloppy Joes in the White House. That's not the way this works.

LEMON: After you said disparaging things about -- you can't expect them to want -- some people may want to and that is their right, but you can't expect people to automatically want to be in your presence when you do that.

Listen, this president believes that America has done so much for Rapinoe when in fact Ms. Rapinoe is impressively representing her country with her talents. Why does he pick these fights, you think?

HILL: Well, I think there are a lot of larger issues. Let's just look at this administration's track record with the LGBT community. It's bad. First of all, Mike Pence, who has so much anti-gay legislation on his track record, is the vice president.

[23:44:58] This is somebody who has been known to support gay conversion therapy. We know about his -- he opposed same-sex marriage. There is plenty of roll backs that this administration has done that would have protected LGBT people. We know that they banned transgendered soldiers.

So when you add all that up, it's no wonder that Megan Rapinoe feels as if her -- she is not being represented as an openly gay athlete. She feels vulnerable. She feels under attack. She feels as if this administration -- they are bothered by her very existence.

So, of course, as she said, this is a walking constant protest for her so that people can understand exactly how this administration's policy has impacted people like her.

LEMON: I'm running out of time, but I just want to get your response to this quote you write. You said, "While childishly ranting about Rapinoe, Trump also made it clear on Twitter that he did not understand why NBA championship teams have refused to visit the White House."

He tweeted about black unemployment, criminal justice reform. It is such a clear disconnect for him, isn't it?

HILL: Yeah. I mean, he is taking credit for this black unemployment numbers. This is something I know you addressed on your show before. Even though it was single digits by the time President Barack Obama left the White House, he is essentially riding the wave and trying to take all the credit. He has said so many disparaging things that we know about African-Americans, about black people period, not just African-Americans.

So, again, why would anybody want to subject themselves to being in the presence of somebody who feels as if they are superior to people who look like him? We saw it with the Boston Red Sox. All the people of color on the Boston Red Sox did not go there, their manager from Puerto Rico.

We saw this administration's response to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. It was shameful. So, I don't know why he thinks that people out of respect for an office that he does not even have respect for would want to be in his company.

LEMON: Jemele, thank you. Have a good weekend. Always a pleasure.

HILL: You, too.

LEMON: Thank you. Coming up, more of my interview with presidential candidate Mayor Pete Buttigieg is coming up. We are going to talk about pride. That's next.

[23:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: You heard my conversation earlier with Mayor Pete Buttigieg, coming off a big night at the Democratic debate last night. We also talked this pride weekend about why it took so long for him to come out and about how far the LGBTQ community has come in 50 years since Stonewall.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG, SOUTH BEND, INDIANA: You're ready when you're ready. You know, frankly, I want to keep punting on this forever if it weren't for the deployment. I just -- I wasn't in any hurry to come to terms with this when I was in my 20s with being gay.

Largely, I guess I told myself because, you know, I had a good day job, it was keeping me busy, it was -- I actually didn't miss or didn't think I miss the opportunity to be dating for a while. What changed it was the deployment. So I was deployed while I was mayor. I was 32 years old.

And I remember realizing you only get to live one life. And there was a very real possibility that I might not come home, that I would be a grown man, mayor of my city. You know, a professional, a homeowner, and have no idea at the end of my life what it was like to be in love. I thought that was nuts.

And so when I came home, I realized that I had to, you know, whatever the professional consequences were, I had to just leave them aside and get on with my personal life which meant in my case coming out.

LEMON (on camera): Authenticity. So that's a very fair answer. I got to ask you about pride, and I got to ask you about the Victory Fund because you just received the endorsement from the Victory Fund, which is the largest LGBTQ plus political action community.

What do you think on this pride weekend, pride month, what do you think it means for the LGBT community to be able to see someone like you stand up and be on that debate stage?

BUTTIGIEG: It's almost an out of body experience even for me to think about. I mean, we are marking 50 years since Stonewall, gave rise to LGBTQ consciousness, when people were being beat up and arrested just for being gay. Now, the sad fact is there are a lot of people who face that kind of danger.

But to think of how far we have come in 50 years, to think that at the beginning of this decade, the same decade we live in right now, I could choose to either be in uniform or be out, but I couldn't be both. And I felt that I could either run for office in Indiana or be out, but not both.

And to think that at the end of that same decade, I'm in an event with my husband as a top tier candidate for the American presidency, it is one thing that gives me hope. Again, not a naive hope because we know how far we have to go whether it's an LGBTQ equality or any other issue of equality in this country, but it does show that it matters, that we speak up, that it matters that march, that it matters that we insist on moving toward equality.

If we can make that difference in this decade for somebody like me, imagine what each of us fighting for each other can do in the next decade and in the balance of my adult life to make our country a fairer, better, more just and more decent place.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: Fifty years after the Stonewall uprising that ignited the modern LGBTQ plus rights movement, CNN is commemorating the movement and its evolution.

[23:55:04] So, be sure to tune in to a live special called "Pride and Progress." It is Sunday at 4:30 p.m. right here on CNN. That's it for us. Thanks for watching. Our coverage continues.

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