Return to Transcripts main page
Interview with Corey Lewandowski about His Testimony Before House Judiciary Committee on Possibility of Obstruction of Justice within Trump Administration; Rep. Madeleine Dean (D-PA) is Interviewed About Corey Lewandowski Stonewalling House Dems at Hearing. Aired 8- 8:30a ET
Aired September 18, 2019 - 08:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: I think they hate this president more than they love their country.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is NEW DAY with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone, Welcome to your New Day. It is Wednesday, September 18th. It is 8:00 in the east. And this was billed as the first official impeachment hearing into President Trump. The president's former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski testified before the House Judiciary Committee for nearly six hours. And testified may be should be in quotation marks. He said stuff out loud. Some were answers to questions. Others, not so much. He stonewalled about his interactions with President Trump and potential episodes of obstruction that were clearly laid out in the Mueller report.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: Congressman, the White House has directed I not disclose the substance any of discussions with the president or his advisers to protect executive branch confidentiality.
The White House has directed that I not disclose the substance any of discussions.
The White House has directed that I not disclose the substance any of discussions with the president.
The White House has directed that I not disclose the substance any of discussions with the president or his advisers to protect executive privilege confidentiality.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Claiming my time. Not going to --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Corey Lewandowski repeatedly cited executive privilege to dodge their questions, though he did choose to answer some pivotal ones.
And joining us now is Corey Lewandowski. Good morning, Corey.
COREY LEWANDOWSKI, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: Good morning to you.
CAMEROTA: OK, did you accomplish what you set out to do yesterday?
LEWANDOWSKI: Yes. My goal was to show up and answer the questions that the House requested under a congressional subpoena. And Alisyn, I've been very clear about this. I've now testified in front of Congress on four separate occasions, spoke to the Special Counsel's office on two separate occasions. They could have just asked me to come, and I would have been happy to do so. They chose to subpoena me and change the rules last week.
CAMEROTA: Yes. But, you -- I'm sorry.
LEWANDOWSKI: And I'm still there.
CAMEROTA: But you said you accomplished your goal to answer their questions. But you didn't really answer many of their questions.
LEWANDOWSKI: I answered every question I had the obligation to answer.
CAMEROTA: Well, you said you couldn't answer it. You actually cited executive privilege many times.
LEWANDOWSKI: But that's not my privilege. I don't have the privilege. I'm not the chief executive officer of the United States. And so it is his privilege and the White House's privilege, and they've notified the committee that they are preserving that right under the Article Two of the Constitution, and they asked me to respect the directive of the White House, and so I've done that.
Now, if the Judiciary Committee takes exception with what the White House has asked for, this is the third branch of the government called the judiciary. They can go and litigate that through, which they are doing as it relates to Don McGahn. But it's not my privilege to waive.
CAMEROTA: Do you think you'll be held in contempt?
LEWANDOWSKI: In contempt for what? Coming and answering questions?
CAMEROTA: You didn't answer the questions. The truth is, Corey, you answered some questions, but you didn't answer the majority of the questions. And our legal experts --
LEWANDOWSKI: Actually I think that's a mischaracterization.
CAMEROTA: Hold on one second, just let me get you to respond to this.
LEWANDOWSKI: That's a mischaracterization.
CAMEROTA: Legal experts this morning say that it's preposterous citing executive privilege.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, you just mischaracterized -- you just mischaracterized saying I didn't answer the majority of questions. You and I both know that's not an accurate statement. You and I both know that I did answer the majority of their questions. And what I said was anything that pertains to the campaign, the White House has allowed me to answer. Anything that's in the Mueller report, I've been allowed to answer. Anything that pertains to private conversations with the president or his senior staff, the White House has asked that I exert the privilege so that if they choose to use it, it has been preserved. So please don't mischaracterize and say I didn't answer the majority of their questions because you and I both know that's not factually accurate.
CAMEROTA: I haven't taken a tally, Corey, of the questions you didn't answer --
LEWANDOWSKI: Then don't make a statement --
CAMEROTA: Let's not get into this spat.
LEWANDOWSKI: No, it's not fair, it's not fair to say something if you don't know it to be factually accurate like that.
CAMEROTA: Of course, we have an entire montage of you saying I can't answer that, I can't answer that, no, I won't answer, I can't answer that.
LEWANDOWSKI: And you think that was a majority of my answers?
CAMEROTA: Corey, the point is this. You cited many times executive privilege, which legal experts this morning say is preposterous because you weren't discussing military secrets. There's no precedent for citing executive privilege for what you all were talking about.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, you're welcome to have someone from the White House to come on, specifically the White House Counsel who wrote the letter to the Judiciary Committee and to my counsel that said we're asking you to preserve the right of the executive branch to hold executive privilege. But Mr. Lewandowski, it's not your privilege to waive. Just like attorney-client privilege is not the attorney's client -- is not the attorney's privilege to waive. It's held by the stakeholder. And I am not the stakeholder.
CAMEROTA: But my question to you was, do you think that you will be held in contempt?
LEWANDOWSKI: I don't have any reason to be held in contempt. And I've told the members of Congress I'm happy to come back and answer more questions if they need me to after the five or six-hour charade that I went through yesterday.
CAMEROTA: There were a couple of moments that have gotten a lot attention. So let's just go through them and maybe you can further expound on them. One of them captured the moment about obstruction, frankly. This is the moment where you were describing how -- they were asking you, I should say, about how the president asked you to deliver a message to Attorney General Jeff Sessions where he would un- recuse himself and limit the scope of the Mueller investigation.
So let's just listen to this for a moment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. HANK JOHNSON, (D-GA): That's what he wanted you to deliver to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, correct?
LEWANDOWSKI: I believe that's an accurate representation.
JOHNSON: And he wanted you to deliver it to Jeff so that Jeff could say it to the people, right?
LEWANDOWSKI: I believe so.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: So you confirmed that you were asked to obstruct justice?
LEWANDOWSKI: No, Alisyn, please. That's not what I confirmed at all. By the way, the Mueller report was very clear. There was no collusion, there's no obstruction.
CAMEROTA: That's not what the Mueller report said, Corey.
LEWANDOWSKI: It absolutely says that.
LEWANDOWSKI: And you should read the page that states that.
CAMEROTA: Wait a second, Corey. Hold on a sending. Time out. Time out. Did you read the Mueller report?
LEWANDOWSKI: No, I never did.
CAMEROTA: Then how do you know what it says?
LEWANDOWSKI: Because the members of Congress were very clear about what was in that report yesterday, and so I am --
CAMEROTA: Corey, no, no, sorry, then you're wrong. Did you read the report?
LEWANDOWSKI: Did you read the report? Alisyn, did you read the report?
CAMEROTA: Corey, of course I had to read the report.
LEWANDOWSKI: You read the entire report?
CAMEROTA: Corey, of course I had to read the entire report, and let me tell you what it said.
LEWANDOWSKI: Tell me.
CAMEROTA: There were 10 different examples of obstruction of justice in there.
LEWANDOWSKI: That's not what it said. It did not say there were 10 examples of obstruction. Alisyn, you're being disingenuous.
CAMEROTA: Here they are. Let me pull them up on the screen for you, since you didn't read the Mueller report.
LEWANDOWSKI: Put the Mueller report up on the screen, please.
CAMEROTA: Here we go.
LEWANDOWSKI: That's not the Mueller report, Alisyn. Alisyn, that's not the Mueller report.
CAMEROTA: Here are the examples -- when the president asked Comey to let the Flynn investigation go. When he tried to stop Session's recusal. That's the one that you were involved in. You may want to read that part. When he fired Comey. When the president tried to remove Mueller. When the president tried to get Sessions to limit the probe. That's another one you were involved in. When he obscured the purpose of the Trump Tower meeting. When he asked Sessions to reverse his recusal. Asking him again to deny attempts to remove Mueller. Trying to influence cooperation of witnesses, including Flynn, Manafort, and Cohen. Those are just some of the examples that scores of legal experts say are obstruction of justice.
LEWANDOWSKI: How can legal experts make a determination when they're unfamiliar with all the facts of the case? That is so disingenuous to go and make a predetermination as a, quote, legal expert without having the opportunity to hear both sides of the case. How is that not a predetermination against this president?
CAMEROTA: Because it lays it out, Corey. It lays it out in the Mueller report, all of the examples that any regular citizen would have been charged and convicted of if they were not a sitting U.S. president. You know that part, right?
LEWANDOWSKI: I don't know that to be true. What I do know is that Attorney General Barr, the deputy attorney general of the United States, decided that there was no obstruction. And I believe in Attorney General Barr. Unless you're saying that Attorney General Barr is not a qualified, competent individual, that he and the deputy attorney general who Bob Mueller presented their case to, made the determination -- are you calling into question their credentials?
CAMEROTA: What I'm saying is that 1,000 --
LEWANDOWSKI: You said you saying scores of legal experts?
CAMEROTA: Corey, what I'm saying is that 1,000, 1,000 former federal prosecutors, Democrats and Republican, a bipartisan group, signed a letter saying that there was evidence of obstruction of justice and that any regular citizen would have been charged and convicted of it from what they saw in the report.
LEWANDOWSKI: So are you calling into question the credibility of Attorney General Barr in saying that he wasn't qualified to make the decision? Because he's the attorney general.
CAMEROTA: Corey, Corey, I already answered the question. Here's the thing, when you confirmed that the president asked you to do that, why didn't you do that? If you didn't think it was wrong, why didn't you do what the president asked you to do?
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, I was very clear. I took my children on vacation. You understand the priority of spending time with your kids, I'm sure.
CAMEROTA: I do. How long did you go on vacation for?
LEWANDOWSKI: I was on vacation for weeks. But I don't live in Washington D.C.
CAMEROTA: So before that, did you talk to the president -- did you talk to Attorney General Sessions before you went on vacation?
LEWANDOWSKI: I was very clear about that. I had a conversation with Jeff. And then I didn't see Jeff and I never delivered the message because I took my children on vacation. If that's the crime --
CAMEROTA: But then how about after you went on vacation. You could have talked to him afterwards.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, if it's a crime to take my children on vacation, I'm guilty as charged.
CAMEROTA: Corey, you didn't do it, and you didn't do it because you must have thought it was wrong.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, I didn't think anything was wrong. The president never asked me to commit a crime. He never asked me to do anything wrong.
CAMEROTA: Yes, he did, Corey. We have it right here. You admitted it yesterday. Why are you not admitting it today? You admitted yesterday.
LEWANDOWSKI: I admitted that he never asked me to commit a crime, yesterday. You're absolutely right, I did do that. I admitted yesterday that the president never asked me to commit a crime. I concur with your decision. Yes, that's accurate.
CAMEROTA: Corey, asking the attorney general to limit the scope of an investigation that the president is being investigated for is a crime.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, we're talking about a hypothetical conversation which never transpired --
CAMEROTA: This isn't hypothetical.
LEWANDOWSKI: And a meet which never occurred. And instead I went on vacation. So you can get all worked in a tither about a conversation which may or could have potentially occurred, but it never did. I never met with Jeff.
CAMEROTA: And why didn't you?
LEWANDOWSKI: Maybe you didn't hear me. I took my children on vacation. Again, if that's a crime --
CAMEROTA: Why didn't you meet when you got back from vacation two weeks later? Why didn't you meet with him?
LEWANDOWSKI: Because I don't live in Washington. I wasn't here. I was home in New Hampshire.
CAMEROTA: Got it.
There was another moment that has gotten a lot of attention where you basically admitted the conditions with which you tell the truth. So let's play this moment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEWANDOWSKI: I'm a truth-teller every time I stand before Congress or a committee of jurisdiction and raise my hand and swear to God under oath.
BARRY BERKE, DEMOCRAT COUNSEL: My question, sir, is when you said the president never asked you to get involved with Mr. Sessions --
LEWANDOWSKI: I have no obligation to have a candid conversation with the media whatsoever, just like they have no obligation to cover me honestly, and they do it inaccurately all the time.
BERKE: You're admitting that on national television you were lying there?
LEWANDOWSKI: What I'm saying is they have been inaccurate on many occasions, and perhaps I was inaccurate that time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: OK, Corey, just to be clear. You only feel the obligation to tell the truth when you're under oath?
LEWANDOWSKI: Which is clearly more than some of your contributors, as you know. Andy McCabe, who has a criminal referral, who is a CNN contributor, was not accurate under oath. He has a criminal referral for lying to the FBI, to lying to the inspector general on three separate occasions. But Alisyn, you and your network continue to use him as a contributor who has been lying under oath. And so if you're going to hold me to a standard, hold your same employees and contributors to that same standard. I had not criminal --
CAMEROTA: Corey, just a simple question. It's just a simple question about you, Corey.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, excuse me. Excuse me. I have -- I should be held --
CAMEROTA: Answer the question.
LEWANDOWSKI: I'll be happy to answer your question, and I'll be held to the same standard as the employees and contributors to CNN, which means --
CAMEROTA: Corey, what are you talking about?
LEWANDOWSKI: Which means when I am under oath, when I am under oath, I will tell the truth. That can't be said -- the truth, as James Comey, or Andrew McCabe, who is employed by CNN.
CAMEROTA: Corey, we are happy to have lots of other segments about that. But I'm talking about you.
LEWANDOWSKI: Let's talk about that segment.
CAMEROTA: Corey, I'm talking about you.
LEWANDOWSKI: You want to accuse -- right, and I'm talking about your network.
CAMEROTA: You only feel obligated to tell the truth when you're under oath?
LEWANDOWSKI: No. What I said was, I never lie under oath, unlike your contributors.
CAMEROTA: No. What you said is I have no obligation to have a candid conversation with the media whatsoever. So you lie to the media?
LEWANDOWSKI: Your contributors lie to the FBI.
CAMEROTA: Corey, I'm talking about you.
LEWANDOWSKI: Your contributors have criminal referrals, and you continue to employ these people, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Hey, Corey.
LEWANDOWSKI: He was a former deputy director of the FBI, and Inspector General Horowitz --
CAMEROTA: I understand the deflection. I get it. I understand you don't want to answer this, but I think that this is important, Corey.
LEWANDOWSKI: -- has referred him for criminal referral for lying under oath. We call that perjury. And you continue to employ him. How can you justify that, Alisyn? CAMEROTA: Corey, I get it. And I know -- hey, Corey. Hey, Corey, I
know what you do. Hey, Corey, you need to let me get a question in, OK. Corey, if you want to ask the questions, you can become a journalist yourself, since you seem --
LEWANDOWSKI: Are you a journalist or are you not? Is that what you are?
CAMEROTA: Corey. Hey, Corey, listen..
LEWANDOWSKI: Are you a journalist, or are you a talking head, which one? Because I'm happy to answer your questions if they're honest and truthful.
CAMEROTA: Hey, Corey, you're not answering. You're listening with your mouth. And what I want you to listen to is, this is important. Do you lie --
LEWANDOWSKI: I've answered your question.
CAMEROTA: -- to the media? What is the answer, yes or no?
LEWANDOWSKI: I've answered your question.
CAMEROTA: Yes or no?
LEWANDOWSKI: I'm as honest as I can be, as often as I can be.
CAMEROTA: What does that mean?
LEWANDOWSKI: Which part of that don't you understand?
CAMEROTA: When you lie, Corey, when do you lie? Are you lying now, for instance?
LEWANDOWSKI: I'm as honest as I can be with you, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Corey, that's not good enough. That's not good enough. You told Congress under oath yesterday that you only feel obligated to tell the truth under oath. And the reason this is important --
LEWANDOWSKI: Do your contributors tell the truth under oath?
CAMEROTA: Hey, Corey, the reason this is important is because --
LEWANDOWSKI: So don't hold me to a different standard.
CAMEROTA: -- we need to know when you're lying and when you're not, and when the administration is lying and when it's not.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, I don't work for the administration.
CAMEROTA: How can we trust -- Corey, you have been very close to the president.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn -- CAMEROTA: You were part of the campaign.
LEWANDOWSKI: Please stop being dishonest. Please stop being dishonest. Number one, number one, I don't work for the administration.
CAMEROTA: How can we know when the president and when the administration lie since you proudly say --
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, you're welcome to call the White House and ask for an interview with the president so you can ask him those questions.
LEWANDOWSKI: I don't work there. Just like I don't hold you accountable for the things I've said on other networks. I don't hold you accountable for the lies your contributors have gave to the Inspector General --
CAMEROTA: You actually are trying to -- frankly, you actually are trying to hold me accountable for that. But here's the other reason --
LEWANDOWSKI: I don't work for the administration.
CAMEROTA: Got it. Understood. Here's the other important part. You are running for Senate in New Hampshire is that right?
LEWANDOWSKI: No. Again, Alisyn, you're being disingenuous.
CAMEROTA: I'm asking. Are you running for Senate?
LEWANDOWSKI: No, you just said you're running.
CAMEROTA: Because I think you just said that I think on "FOX and Friends" you just said that you are very close to announcing a run.
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, there's a difference between saying I'm close to making a decision, which I said I would do in October, and you stipulating that I'm running for the --
CAMEROTA: I'm asking you a question. Are you running?
LEWANDOWSKI: I haven't made that determination yet. I've been very clear about that.
CAMEROTA: OK, very good. Fair, fair, fair. So you haven't made your decision. That's all I wanted to know.
LEWANDOWSKI: But if you want to go and support me, go to StandWithCorey.com. If you want to go and support me, go to StandwithCorey.com, I'll be happy to support you.
CAMEROTA: Wow, that sounds like somebody who wants to run for Senate.
LEWANDOWSKI: I didn't say I didn't want to run. What I said was I will make a determination in October if I'm going to run.
Corey, listen, when -- because you say, I'm as honest as I can be -- and I think that that's an important thing for voters to understand, how will voters in New Hampshire know -- if you run for Senate, how will they know when you're being honest?
LEWANDOWSKI: Alisyn, the people of New Hampshire know me. They know the fake news that covers me. They know the fake stories that have come out about me.
But they also know I'm a resident of the state. They know I've been a resident of the state my entire adult life.
And what they do know about me --
LEWANDOWSKI: -- is that when I believe in something, I'm going to fight for it.
LEWANDOWSKI: And I won't allow people to continue to impugn my integrity --
LEWANDOWSKI: -- by putting false statements in my voice about me that are completely inaccurate.
LEWANDOWSKI: So, if I decide to get into the U.S. Senate race --
LEWANDOWSKI: -- the people of New Hampshire will have that opportunity to decide --
CAMEROTA: For sure.
LEWANDOWSKI: -- if I should represent them in Washington, D.C.
CAMEROTA: Of course. Absolutely. Absolutely.
Have you spoken to the president since your appearance yesterday?
LEWANDOWSKI: Look, Alisyn, as you can respect, I wouldn't disclose a private conversation if I had one with the president or not.
CAMEROTA: Well, I don't need to know what you said, but have you spoken to him? LEWANDOWSKI: Again, I'm not going to disclose if I spoke to a
president or not. I think that's out of bounds, and I don't think any journalist would go on air and talk about a private conversation they may or may not have had with the president.
CAMEROTA: Do you know how the president felt about your appearance yesterday?
LEWANDOWSKI: All I know is what he's tweeted which I think you probably have the opportunity to post on your screen from his recent Twitter account.
CAMEROTA: OK. Corey Lewandowski, thank you very much for attempting to explain how you approach the truth, how you approach your job and the future. Thank you for being here.
LEWANDOWSKI: Thank you for trying to cover me fairly. Thank you.
CAMEROTA: Thank you.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Well, that was interesting. Thank you for trying to cover me fairly.
CAMEROTA: I do try to cover him fairly. He's right about that.
BERMAN: I was listening with my ears as opposed to my mouth there.
CAMEROTA: Yes. Thank you. I appreciate that.
All right. You just heard Corey Lewandowski say stuff out loud. How will House Democrats conduct their oversight duties going forward? We're going to ask one of them, next.
BERMAN: Moments ago, we heard from former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski about his testimony before the House Judiciary Committee.
Lewandowski refused to answer dozens of questions in what Democrats have billed as the first official impeachment-related hearing.
Joining us now is Democratic member of Congress, Madeleine Dean, who was part of that committee.
Congresswoman, thank you for being with us.
You had a chance to listen to part of what Corey was just saying to Alisyn. He suggested somehow that he did answer most of the questions from Congress and he didn't dodge or weave. That doesn't seem to be the hearing that I watched yesterday, the one that he described.
What do you feel that you got from him?
REP. MADELEINE DEAN (D-PA): Well, that was a fascinating interview.
And I'm wondering if you and Alisyn swore him in because as he told us, he feels no obligation to say anything truthful to the media. And I think he revealed himself today.
We saw yesterday a failed foot soldier of a president in search of obstruction of justice, obstruction of us and Congress and our constitutional obligations to over see the corruption of a president. Just total cover-up.
And Mr. Lewandowski is just a small player in that. The big player, of course, is the president who sought to obstruct justice and who sought yesterday by not having Dearborn and Porter come in and by having Lewandowski come in planked by White House attorneys to obstruct our work.
BERMAN: Now, to be clear, what Corey told Alisyn was he was as honest as he can be, which isn't saying I'm being honest right now. Do you have --
DEAN: No. But he told our attorney yesterday that he does lie before the media.
BERMAN: Absolutely. He said, I have no obligation to be candid with the media and before that only promised to be truthful when under oath. That I think is a very important distinction there.
But under oath yesterday, he did say that the Mueller report was absolutely right. That the president did tell him to get Jeff Sessions to recuse himself from the Mueller investigation. How significant was that?
DEAN: I think it's very significant. The Mueller report pointed it out. It's significant that the president asked multiple people, McGahn and others to make Mr. Sessions say some comments, unrecuse himself and ultimately get the review of the special counsel away from this president.
He dictated a long message to Mr. Lewandowski that Mr. Lewandowski nervously wrote and was to deliver to Mr. Sessions. He doesn't do that for a whole month. The president asked him, when are you going to deliver that message to Sessions to make sure that this investigation of the special counsel doesn't look at me, only looks at future presidents? And, of course, Lewandoski never does it.
BERMAN: OK. So that was in the Mueller report. I agree it was interesting to hear Corey affirm it, especially given he was dodging so many other questions there. But it was in the Mueller report. In addition to that omission, we got a lot chaos. It was a hot mess yesterday watching that hearing.
And a lot of people thought maybe it didn't look good for you all. So, if your goal is to push for the impeachment of the president of the United States, or if your goal is to find out more of the truth, how was that helpful yesterday?
DEAN: I would disagree with you. I think it did not look good for Mr. Lewandowski and it did not look good for this president. The president is involved in a serious attempt to cover up. We had a witness there yesterday who never worked in the White House, never worked for the administration, and yet was claiming privilege, was flanked by White House attorneys, said he never read the report.
It just looked terrible for Mr. Lewandowski. Worse than that, it looks very bad for the president because, as you know, article 3 of the Nixon impeachment -- articles of impeachment was the very thing that happened yesterday, obstruction of Congress. The president is showing himself to be in violation of his constitutional duties. That's what that looked like yesterday.
BERMAN: I agree. I have seen no precedent for someone who does not work in the White House to hide under some kind of privilege. It's not a privilege that I'm aware of existing anywhere else.
BERMAN: Given that, why not hold Corey Lewandowski in contempt? Why not move for that ten minutes into the hearing yesterday? Do you think that should have been done sooner?
DEAN: No, I don't. I'm very glad that the chairman is considering that. We actually used our time to reveal to the American public just exactly the incredible kind of character that Mr. Lewandowski is. He showed himself very, very poorly. And we got some very important things on the record about the obstruction by this president.
So I'm pleased that we continued with the hearing.
BERMAN: Why is it only a consideration, though, to hold him in contempt, if you believe that there is no actual privilege that he can exert?
DEAN: I -- that's beyond me. That is up to the chairman, actually.
BERMAN: So -- but you want him to do it? You want him to push through with this, with the contempt?
DEAN: We have a lot to do. So I really count on the wisdom of the chairman in negotiating all of the things we have to do, all of the legal proceedings we have to do, all of the oversight because, as you know, we're also involved in substantive legislation.
There's a lot for us to do. So I leave it up to the chairman and our counsel to determine when and where to hold him in contempt.
BERMAN: You said we're also involved in substantive legislation. I know there's a difference between legislation and oversight. You're not suggesting this isn't substantive, are you? DEAN: Oh, this is very substantive. But what I'm talking about is
legislation -- for example, we marked up three more bills that would protect the lives of Americans, of people that live in this country from gun violence.
You know we sent over to the Senate in February universal background checks, closing the Charleston loophole. So our plate is fool. The Senate is sitting on their hands. We're doing substantive and oversight.
BERMAN: In terms of the oversight, what do you want to see happen next?
DEAN: We're going to continue a robust series of hearings so that we can get before the American people the incredible corruption of this president. Consider what he has done. He's dangled pardons. He's paid off mistresses just days before an election to try to cover that up. And he has profited from his office.
We know that this president is in violation of so many constitutional obligations that he swore an oath to. So I want to make sure we take a look at all of those other areas as well.
BERMAN: Congresswoman Madeleine Dean, thank you for coming on and having this discussion this morning. Very interesting to watch yesterday. We look forward to speaking to you again in the future.
DEAN: Thank you, John.
CAMEROTA: John, now to this story, police have stopped at least three threats of violence at schools this week. We'll tell you what happened and where, next.