Return to Transcripts main page
Ex-UK Ambassador Said That Trump Ditched Iran Deal To Spite Obama; Judge To Decide Whether Epstein Gets Bail; Trump Keeps Attacking Democratic Congresswomen After Racist Tweets. Aired 12:30-1p ET
Aired July 15, 2019 - 12:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[12:30:00] JOHN KING, CNN ANCHOR: Is that we have a debate in two weeks, we'll see.
Up next, Jeffrey Epstein back in court today as judge weighs whether or not to grant bail. And prosecutors reveal to the court what they found inside his apartment.
KING: Topping our political radar today, the Daily Mail reporting more provocative comments made by Kim Darroch when he was Britain's ambassador to the United States, citing leaked cables. The paper quotes Darroch as saying President Trump's decision to abandon the Iran nuclear deal was an act of "diplomatic vandalism" aimed at spiting former President Barack Obama.
[12:35:09] Darroch resigned last week after leaked cables show he described the President as inept, insecure, and incompetent.
The Trump administration pulling another lever now aimed to deterring Central American migrants from coming to the United States. The administration filing a new regulation to the Federal Registry that says with limited exceptions, any "alien" who enters or tries to enter after transiting through Mexico would be unable to claim asylum. The new rule expected to go into effect tomorrow.
Some leading congressional Democrats joining first responders at ground zero in New York today to celebrate last week's extension of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund by the House. That measure still needs approval in the Senate where the majority leader, Mitch McConnell, says the bill will be considered soon.
The Democratic leader, Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, making this urgent request at that event today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): Now, I have five letters for Senator McConnell, C-L-E-A-N, clean. I have one word for Senator McConnell, clean. This bill has passed the House. It has gotten the support of both the Democratic and Republican leaderships. No gains. Do not attach this bill to something else where it might get messed up. (END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: For now Jeffrey Epstein remains in jail as the presiding judge telling the court today, he would only hear arguments or meet side regarding bail and they will make his final decision on the matter this Thursday. Defense lawyers for Epstein, that multimillionaire charged of course with sex trafficking of under age girls requesting he'd be allowed to live in his Upper East Side mansion pending trial.
Prosecutors though say he's a flight risk. He was engaged in possible witness tampering in recent month. They want Epstein to remain behind bars until his trial.
Our Crime and Justice Reporter Shimon Prokupecz live outside the court house. Shimon, what important happened inside the courtroom today?
SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: Well, court ended on a dramatic note. Two of the victims, two women who say they have been victimized by Jeffrey Epstein addressed the judge. Both obviously saying that they want him kept in jail during the bail during the -- while this case gets under way and they do not want him released pending trial.
One of them, she choked up, Annie Farmer, and the other one, Courtney Wild, she told the judge that he's a scary person to have walking the streets. Obviously, a big decision here for the judge. He is saying he's going to wait until Thursday to make that final decision.
The defense attorneys for Jeffrey Epstein arguing that essentially they want to create a jail for him at his Upper East Side $77 million mansion. They're willing to hire security. They're even willing to put up more money, more cash if the judge asks for it. Anything to get him released, they're willing to do is what they told the judge.
Prosecutors quickly, John, are just worried. They are worried that he's going to flee. They found a passport. They say it's an expired passport from the 1980s in his home, a foreign passport where his address is listed in Saudi Arabia. It's his photo in the passport, they say, but it's not under his name.
Obviously, this helping their case and their argument that he could potentially use some way to get out of the country, and this is something that they're extremely worried about. And so they're asking the judge to not release him, the judge making that decision on Thursday. It will be in written form.
So for now at least Jeffrey Epstein remains in jail and we should know whether or not on Thursday if the judge is going to release him, John.
KING: Yes. We'll keep on top of the developments. Shimon Prokupecz at the court house, we appreciate the reporting today.
Up next for us here, the President's tweets prompting an all-too- familiar question. Is the President of the United States a racist?
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [12:43:17] Just moments ago, President Trump asked at the White House was that Sunday morning tweet attacking four Democratic women of color in the House of Representatives, racist?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF UNITED STATES: Did you see those (inaudible)? When you look at her statements about people, but what I'm going to do is I'm going to speak from right over here because there's so many people here. And this is really about economic development and how well our country is doing.
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Which congressman are you talking about?
TRUMP: But I'm going to discuss the issues.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: You can see there the President refusing to answer the question from CNN's Kaitlan Collins, other reporters at the White House trying to get him to answer for his reprehensible tweets yesterday.
Also this hour, two more Republican objections to those weekend tweet attacks. This is Michigan Republican Fred Upton. "I'm appalled by the President's tweets. There's no excuse."
Now, from Texas Republican Congressman Pete Olson, the tweets, he says, "Are not reflective of the values of the one million plus people in Texas 22."
So we are beginning to see as the day unfolds still only a handful but some Republicans willing to stand up. The President at that event, he knew this question was coming, just saying nothing, not defending himself, saying nothing. Just saying, I'm here to do something else.
TOLUSE OLORUNNIPA, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Yes. And the President has trafficked in this type of language before. So it's a little bit surprising to see any congressman say that they're appalled by the President's words, even though it is appalling to hear the President of the United States traffic in racist tropes.
But many of the other congressmen and congress members who have not spoken out are not appalled. They know that the President came to office in part because he was propelled into political prominence by talking about birtherism. And that was a racist idea that he promoted.
During his campaign he talked about a Mexican judge who was actually an American-born citizen. And at that time, House Speaker Paul Ryan said that was the textbook definition of racism.
[12:45:07] The President has engaged in this type of language before and members of the Congress have either been pushed out of office after criticizing him or they have decided that they do not want a primary, and they do not want to be involved in going back and forth with him. So, even though we've seen a few more Congress members speak out, I think a lot of them have made their piece with this type of language and they are just going to accept it.
KING: And even if they don't like it, they just still hide for a day or two and just hoping that some new controversy comes up and that people move on.
To your point, it's important and I think most people know this. But, you see this tweet and some people would say, oh, Sunday morning, maybe the President just chose his words poorly, no. Let's go back through some of the history. Toluse just mentioned some of it. We've been here before way too many times.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.
They didn't put themselves down as it was good. And you had some very bad people in that group. But, you also had people that were very fine people on both sides.
This judge is giving us unfair rulings. Now I say why. Well, I want to -- I'm building a wall, OK? And it's a wall between Mexico. Not another country.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's not from Mexico.
TRUMP: In my opinion --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's from Indiana.
TRUMP: That he is Mexican, Mexican heritage.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: There's more. We stopped there, but there's more. To this point about the here and now, the tweet telling the four new Democratic women of color in the House they should go back, three of them born in America, all of them Americans, all of them duly elected.
Nancy Pelosi, your colleague letter saying that she wants members to join them in a resolution condemning the President's xenophobic tweets. So, the Democrats will and sometimes they too, you know, not that they're not outraged, they just decide they are not going to take official action. At least show that they're going to bring to the floor to force Republicans if to vote on this in this House.
TARINI PARTI, NATIONAL POLITICAL REPORTER, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: Right. It's one thing to tweet out that, you know, you're not happy with what the President is tweeting. It will be another for Republicans to actually take the step and vote with Democrats that they are condemning this sort of language.
So, you know, it will be interesting to see if any Republicans actually take that step. MOLLY BALL, NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, TIME: It was interesting, you know, what you saw at that Pete Olson tweet that was up on screen, Republican Congressman from Texas. He went on to say in that tweet, you know, that he represents one of the most diverse districts in the country.
And that's what strikes fear into Republicans' hearts is that this isn't -- that this is a diverse country, and a lot of them, even if they're in what look like safe Republican districts, and they are still diverse districts. And they -- and there are a lot of people in those districts who are American citizens who can vote.
This is not a country where only white people get to be citizens or to vote. And so that is why a lot of Republican Congressmen really would appreciate if the President would knock this kind of thing off, even if some of them don't want to come out and say it.
KING: It's the 2020 election cycle we're going into, not the 1820 election cycle. Since, we showed you the President not answering the question from CNN's Kaitlan Collins. Since then he's been asked the question again, are your tweets racist?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: Do you think your tweets were racist?
TRUMP: Not at all.
TRUMP: Not at all.
TRUMP: Nobody has a problem at all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Some of that hard to hear but, you hear not at all. So, he's not trying to find a way -- sometimes he tries to find a way out or step back. Not here.
OLORUNNIPA: Yes. And some of the remarks he also said if someone has a problem with our country, they should leave, which is sort of a recast of what he said before. But the President has talked about problems he had with the country when he was running for office. He said we need to make America great again. And he said, you know, the US has been stupid and foolish. And he's levied all kinds of criticism about the country.
So now that he sees some Democratic Congresswomen saying that the country needs to improve, he's saying they should leave. So, there's an interesting contrast there. That he's saying that anyone who thinks that the country can do better or is not doing right it needs to leave. And I think that's where you get back to the question of whether or not it's more about what they're saying or what they look like and who they are.
KING: That's a great point. There's not exactly intellectual consistency there.
[12:49:10] Up next is what Beto O'Rourke goes public with a controversial part of his family tree.
KING: 2020 Democratic candidate Beto O'Rourke revealing what he sees as a hard truth from his family tree. He wrote this on me on medium overnight.
"I was recently given documents showing that both Amy and I are descended from people who owned slaves along with other possessions listed in their property log were two human beings, Rose and Eliza. We all need to know our own story. It is only then I believe that congressman wrote, former congressman, that we can take necessary steps to repair the damage done and stop visiting this injustice on the generations that follow ours.''
O'Rourke listed the actions that he would prioritize in office to tackle racial inequality and justice, including his continued support for reparations.
We always learn a lot about presidential candidates. Is there -- he's trying to get back into the conversation in the Democratic race. Is there some -- is there significance here or is this just sharing his history?
BALL: Well, it seems like a little bit of both. Yes, I mean, he is, you know, his campaign is widely viewed as sort of failing. He hasn't been able to have a breakout moment.
And if you recall his breakout moment nationally in the Senate campaign was when he spoke about the kneeling NFL players. And so, it was a similar thing, right. It was --
[12:55:00] It galvanized a lot of people that he spokes so compassionately about the black experience and about his own reckoning with his own white privilege. And it seems like a similar situation where he's showing how he understands, you know, the genesis of inequalities in this country. The question is does this have that same kind of resonance.
OLORUNNIPA: And he talked about how, even though this was several generations ago, he has benefited from the fact that, you know, his grandfather passed down the wealth and the benefits that he received all the way down through the generations, and how those slaves that were part of his family did not have that benefit. And how, now that there's a conversation about reparations, making that contrast he thought was important.
KING: All right. I want to take you live to the White House. The President of the United States speaking.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Complaining all the time very simply, you can leave. You can leave right now. Come back if you want, don't come back, that's OK too. But if you're not happy, you can leave.
Well, that's just a very racist statement. Somebody that would say that, so Speaker Pelosi said make America white again.
Let me tell you, that's a very racist -- that's a very racist statement. I'm surprised she'd say that. John, go ahead.
TRUMP: Well, they're very unhappy. I'm watching them. All they do is complain. So, all I'm saying is if they want to leave, they can leave, John, they can leave.
I mean I look at the one. I look at Omar, I don't know, I never met her. I hear the way she talks about Al-Qaeda. Al-Qaeda has killed many Americans. She said you could hold your chest out. You can -- when I think of America, huh. When I think of Al-Qaeda, I can hold my chest out.
When she talked about the World Trade Center being knocked down, some people, you remember the famous some people. These are people that in my opinion hate our country.
Now, you can say what you want, but get a list of all of the statements they have made. And all I'm saying, that if they're not happy here, they can leave. They can leave.
And you know what? I'm sure that there'll be many people that won't miss them. But they have to love -- they have to love our country. They're Congress people. And I never used any names. But these are people -- quiet, quiet. Quiet. Quiet. Quiet. Quiet. These are people that if they don't like it here, they can leave. And I'd be -- I don't know who's going to miss them, but I guess some people will.
One of them is polling -- one of them is polling at eight -- one of them is polling at 8 percent. One of them is polling at 8 percent.
So when I hear people speaking about how wonderful Al-Qaeda is, when I hear people talking about some people, some people with the World Trade Center, some people. No, not some people, much more than some people.
When I hear the statements that they have made, and in one case you have somebody that comes from Somalia, which is a failed government, a failed state, who left Somalia, who ultimately came here and now is a congresswoman who's never happy, says horrible things about Israel. Hates Israel, hates Jews, hates Jews. It's very simple.
And if the Democrats want to wrap their bows around this group of four people, one of them kept Amazon out of New York, tens of thousands of jobs, would have been a great thing. And she kept Amazon from going -- it would have been a good deal. I mean, could he have made better? Maybe, but tens of thousands of jobs. And New York has not been the same since that happened. It's really hurt New York, and New York City.
Amazon was going to go there. They were going to relocate a major section of their business in New York. She kept them out. That was a terrible thing she did. A terrible thing she did.
So here's the story. Here's the story. I see them complaining. They're complaining constantly.
I watched Lindsey Graham today on "Fox & Friends" talking about the same subject. And frankly, even stronger than what I'm saying.
He said they're communists. I'm saying that they're socialists definitely. As to whether or not they're communists, I would think they might be. But this isn't what our country is about.
Nevertheless, they're free to leave if they want. And if they want to leave, that's fine. And if they want to stay, that's fine. But the people have to know.
And politicians can't be afraid to take them on. A politician that hears somebody where we're at war with Al-Qaeda, and sees somebody talking about how great Al-Qaeda is, pick out her statement. That was Omar. How great Al-Qaeda is, when you hear that, and we're losing great soldiers to Al-Qaeda.