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Biden Wants Trump Investigated Over Ukraine Phone Call; Giuliani Confirms He Asked Ukrainians To Investigate Bidens; Booker Issues Plea To Donors For $1.7 Million By End Of Month; Warren Takes Hits From Rivals On How To Pay For Health Care Plan; Judge Orders Trump To Testify In Case Over 2015 Confrontation Between His Security Team & Protesters; CNN Exclusive Interview With Iran's Foreign Minister; American University Student Sues Neo-Nazi Trolls And Wins; Patriots Cut Antonio Brown Amid Sexual Misconduct Claims. Aired 1-2p ET

Aired September 21, 2019 - 13:00   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:00:36]

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN HOST: Hello, there. Thanks for joining me. I'm Martin Savidge, in for Fredricka Whitfield.

We're going to begin this hour with Joe Biden on the attack against President Trump. In a fiery reply, the Democratic presidential candidate last hour calling for an investigation into President Trump's controversial phone call with the president of Ukraine.

At a campaign stop in Iowa, Biden pushed back at unproven claims that he and his son acted inappropriately in their dealings with the Ukrainian government during Biden's time as vice president. And he accused President Trump of abuse of power. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES & DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Here is what I know. I know that Trump deserves to be investigated. He is violating every basic norm of the presidency. You should be asking him the question, why is he on the phone with a foreign leader trying to intimidate a foreign leader, if that's what happened. That appears to be what happened.

You should be looking at Trump. Trump's doing this because he knows I will beat him like a drum. And he is using the abuse of power and every element of the presidency to try to do something to smear me.

Everybody looked at this and everybody that's looked at this has said there's nothing there.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAVIDGE: This all centers on a conversation between President Trump, one he had at the end of July, and it prompted a whistleblower complaint to the Intelligence Community inspector general.

A source telling CNN, during that call, Trump pressed Ukraine's president to investigate Joe Biden's son, Hunter, who once worked for a Ukrainian energy company. It's important to note there was no evidence of wrongdoing by Joe or Hunter Biden.

In a tweet today, the president insisted, quote, "Nothing was said that was in any way wrong," unquote, in his conversation with the Ukrainian leader.

CNN's Jessica Dean is standing by with the Biden campaign. But we're going to start with Sarah Westwood, who is covering developments at the White House.

Sarah, there are a number of developments.

SARAH WESTWOOD, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Martin. This morning, President Trump defending his conduct once again on Twitter, describing his talk with the Ukrainian leader as a perfectly fine and routine conversation.

Keep in mind, the allegation at the heart of all of this is that Trump appealed to a foreign leader for help getting investigation that could damage a prospective political rival. Obviously, drawing that strong reaction that we heard from Joe Biden and from other Democrats on the 2020 campaign trail.

And that July 25th phone call with Ukrainian President Zelensky is now the subject of a whistleblower complaint filed August 12th with the Intelligence Community inspector general.

House Democrats are trying to get their hands on that complaint, but they're running into roadblocks from the administration. Sources tell CNN that the White House counsel's office and the Department of Justice have gotten involved in trying to keep that campaign secret, keep it out of the hands of Congress.

Meanwhile, President Trump is not only describing the situation as a Ukraine witch hunt today on twitter but, yesterday, was also accusing the whistleblower of partisanship, despite admitting that he does not know who it is. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I don't know the identity of the whistleblower. I just hear it's a partisan person, meaning it comes out from another party. But I don't have any idea. But I can say that it was a totally appropriate conversation. It was actually a beautiful conversation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WESTWOOD: Now the Intel Community's watchdog met with lawmakers behind closed doors this week, but said he was not authorized to share details about the complaint. But lawmakers could get more answers this week when acting

intelligence director, Joseph Maguire, testifies before Congress. There will be questions, Martin, not only about the nature of the complaint, the nature of the conversation, but also about how it was subsequently handled by the administration and why it's taking so long for Congress to even learn about these allegations -- Martin?

SAVIDGE: That hearing will be very interesting.

Sarah Westwood, thank you from the White House.

Let's bring in CNN's Jessica Dean.

Jessica, you're at that event in Iowa. Former Vice President Biden was ready and expecting to address this controversy today. He unloaded.

JESSICA DEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, yes, he was ready for this. They knew this is the question. This is the story that matters for the Biden campaign right now.

And, look, Vice President Biden has been clear that this is what weighed on him as he was weighing whether or not to get on this race or not, the potential attacks that Trump would aim at his family. They knew it would likely come, that he would turn his attention to Biden and his family.

[13:05:15]

And you heard Vice President Biden on the trail talking about Trump as a bully. And now here we are at the moment when President Trump and his allies have fully turned their attention to Vice President Biden.

Here is what he said to that. Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BIDEN: I know what I'm up against. I know what I'm up against, a serial abuser. That's what this guy is. He abuses power wherever he can. And he sees any threat to his staying in power, he will do whatever he has to do. But this crosses the line. This crosses the line.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

DEAN: Martin, as you mentioned, he was ready to respond to all of this. We were with him yesterday on the campaign trail and he just said something very quickly in passing that these were unfounded claims, there was no evidence to support any of them. Today, much more that he was talking about. He came out much more forcefully today, ready to take this head on and to call out President Trump's behavior -- Martin?

SAVIDGE: Jessica Dean, traveling with the former vice president, and in Iowa, thank you very much.

Joining me now to discuss the fallout, CNN National Security Analysts, Shawn Turner and Matthew Rosenberg.

Hello to both of you. Thanks for joining me.

Let me ask you, Matthew, first. Biden now calling for a full investigation into the president. What are your thoughts on that?

MATTHEW ROSENBERG, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: This is obviously -- we need to find out more here. One of the troubling things about this story is that we still know very little. We still flow is a whistleblower. We don't know who it is or where they're coming from. We don't know what evidence they saw.

We have been told, by CNN, "Washington Post," many of us found out this involves Ukraine and apparently involves a conversation President Trump had with the Ukrainian leader, pressing him to investigate Joe Biden.

Look, was that done? Was the idea that you can't get your military aide until you investigate Biden? We don't know that yet.

But we know even the mere fact that the president of the United States called up a foreign leader and said, hey, you should investigate a political rival, that is troubling. And that needs to be fleshed out.

SAVIDGE: Shawn, I want to ask you two things. First, on the whistleblower, do we know if this is someone that listens into the president on this phone call back in July?

SHAWN TURNER, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Martin, potentially. I understand that this whistleblower is someone that is an Intelligence Community official that may have been detailed to the NSC.

If you're detailed to the NSC from the Intelligence Community, that means, depending on your area of expertise, you may be asked to listen in on phone calls between the president and other world leaders and you may be asked to write the readout of those phone calls.

What gives me this impression of is someone who was at the NSC and may have been able to listen in on those phone calls, is that now we know, according to reporting, that there was potentially eight different instances in which the president may have talked about this topic or made promises to the Ukrainian president. So that tells me this is someone who probably did not have a single event of access, but someone with repeated exposure to these conversations.

SAVIDGE: OK. I want to point out that CNN has not been able to confirm that number of eight that you just related.

And, Shawn, I want you to listen to the president's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, when he was pressed on this issue.

Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Did you ask the Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden?

RUDY GIULIANI, PERSONAL ATTORNEY TO DONALD TRUMP: No, actually, I didn't. I asked them to investigate the allegations that there was interference in the election of 2016 by the Ukrainians for the benefit of Hillary Clinton for which there already is --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: You never asked about Hunter Biden, you never asked anything about Joe Biden --

(CROSSTALK)

GIULIANI: The only thing I asked about Joe Biden is to get to the bottom of how it was that Usanko (ph), who was appointed --

CUOMO: Right.

GIULIANI: -- dismissed the case against --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: So you did ask the Ukraine to look into Joe Biden?

GIULIANI: Of course, I did.

CUOMO: You just said you didn't.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAVIDGE: Again, stressing there's nothing to suggest that Joe Biden or his son, Hunter, has done anything wrong.

But, Shawn, let me ask you, does this admission there by Rudy Giuliani sort of 100 percent confirm that the president is soliciting another country to help him win the election?

TURNER: I think not only does that exchange as Rudy Giuliani confirmed, but I think the president himself confirmed that. One thing that happens with Rudy Giuliani is, often times, when it becomes clear that the president is about to get caught doing something that he perhaps should not have done, Rudy Giuliani comes out and will admit, dribble it out a little bit that it actually happened and then say there was nothing inappropriate about it.

But Rudy Giuliani and the president, who yesterday said, if he did talk about this, it doesn't matter.

[13:09:59]

Look they're both wrong. This matters. And it matters because, if it is true that the president is linking military aid to an investigation of Joe Biden, then the president is not only inviting a foreign government to interfere in our upcoming election, but he is implicitly telling the Ukrainians what the outcome should be. We can't forget that the Ukraine's prosecutor general has come out and

said on the record that he has look into the record that he has seen no evidence of wrongdoing.

What the president is doing, if the reporting is true, is he is saying, I understand what your answer is, but I don't like it, I want you to give me a different answer. And the Ukrainians know they can't call the president and say, Mr. President, we've looked into this, we've investigated, there's nothing there, now please send that check. They know that's not going to happen. So --

(CROSSTALK)

SAVIDGE: Let me ask this, because we're getting sort of on the sidelines.

Matthew, weigh in on this Rudy Giuliani exchange we just saw.

ROSENBERG: Look, one of the great things about this presidency is they're very public about what they're doing. Giuliani, after a short denial, said, of course, I asked them.

SAVIDGE: But he had to be pressed. It's not like it blurted it out -- well, he did blurt it out, but he had to be pushed on it.

ROSENBERG: True. And now the president, though, has said somebody should look into Joe Biden.

And I think that Shawn is right. It's pretty clear the to the Ukrainians, there's only one answer here, which is that Joe Biden, Hunter Biden, or both were somehow corrupt and involved in a corrupt dealing. That's what they're looking for here.

And this is a country that depends on the United States. It needs the United States to defend it from Russia. When they're in this position, for the president of the United States to come on and say, we want an investigation here, that is more of a demand than a request.

And it raises troubling questions about where the line is, what's appropriate for a president to ask a foreign country about his own political rivals.

SAVIDGE: Matthew, I will ask you this, given what we know about this story, and reiterating again that there's nothing to say that Joe or his son had done any wrong, but what we know about this, what do you think it will do as far as the public's perception of security for the upcoming 2020 election and foreign meddling?

ROSENBERG: You know, it is a tough one. I think foreigners -- I think everyone has gotten used to the idea that we will have meddling. I think the question now is, are U.S. political parties going to condone it, encourage it, or not. Right now, it doesn't look great.

SAVIDGE: Shawn, same question? TURNER: I think we have to depend on the agencies out there like the

National Security Agency and others, DHS, to make sure they keep a close watch on this. But there's no doubt, no question that there will be interference.

The real challenge here it that for those inferring, particularly if it is interference backed by a nation-state like we saw in Russia, what is the message that the president is sending with regard to that interference. And do they believe that there will be accountability if and when they are caught? And that's uncertain right now.

SAVIDGE: Shawn Turner, Matthew Rosenberg, good to have you both on the show. Thank you.

TURNER: Thank you.

ROSENBERG: Thanks.

SAVIDGE: Still ahead, an urgent plea from Democratic candidate, Cory Booker. His appeal to voters to keep him in the race for president. That is next.

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[13:16:41]

SAVIDGE: Democratic presidential hopefuls are swarming Iowa this weekend. Huge crowds are expected in the red state. There will be 17 candidates that will be there making a pitch to voters. They will have 135 days before the Iowa caucuses to make their case, but for some, time is, well, of the essence.

In a series of tweets this morning, Democratic presidential candidate, Cory Booker, made it clear that he needs two million dollars, or close to it, in the next 10 days to remain competitive in the race for the Democratic nomination.

With me now is Patti Solis Doyle, the former presidential campaign manager for Hillary Clinton and a CNN political commentator, and former Republican Congressman from Pennsylvania and CNN Political Commentator, Charlie Dent.

Good afternoon to the two of you.

PATTI SOLIS DOYLE, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Good afternoon.

SAVIDGE: Hey, Patti, let me ask you, his urgent appeal to voters, donors, $1.7 million in 10 days. That seems like a lot to ask for or is it not? What do you make of the strategy?

SOLIS DOYLE: It is difficult to raise money for a political campaign, even more so when you're running against 20 some other people. There's only so much money to go around.

It's more difficult when you're competing in a place like Iowa, where it is a $25 million admission fee. We spent $30 million and came in third in the Clinton campaign. You have to spend a lot of money on organizers, offices. You have to have at least one office in every county or more. It's a high-stakes contest, the first in the nation.

And $2 million in 10 days is not a lot to ask. But the question is, can he do it. And will it be enough? Will it be enough for him to remain competitive in a place that it costs $30 million just to be competitive?

SAVIDGE: And what is the "and if I don't" part of it? What does he do after that?

SOLIS DOYLE: If he doesn't -- and we will see a lot of this as we get closer and closer to the caucuses. We're not going to have 20-plus candidates anymore. I think we get closer to nine or 10. If you don't have the money to compete --

(CROSSTALK)

SAVIDGE: He is not saying in 10 days he is done.

SOLIS DOYLE: He is not saying that. No, I don't think so. But this is a real plea, not a stunt, but a real plea.

SAVIDGE: OK.

Charlie, let me ask you this. We just heard a short while ago from former Vice President Joe Biden, and he came out really swinging for the fences, calling for an investigation into the president for what he calls an abuse of power over that call to the Ukrainian president. What's your reaction to this?

CHARLIE DENT, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes, my reaction is that the president is behaving in an improper way and he is very transparent at the same time. It's kind of remarkable. A real head spinner.

That said, if you're Joe Biden, I don't think you want to talk too much about this issue of your family.

I don't think the vice president did anything wrong, obviously. I think he is the victim here. I think this is a very unfair shot at him by the president.

But at the same time, the vice president's son, Hunter, who has had problems, was on the board of an Ukrainian company and the optics are just not very good.

The long and short of this is the vice president is a victim but not a good subject to talk about.

SAVIDGE: And we'll reiterate again, there's nothing to suggest that Joe Biden or his son have done anything wrong.

[13:20:07]

DENT: Right, right. SAVIDGE: But, Charlie, let me ask this. The calls for the investigation of the president, how will they impact his constituents and how is it going to affect him going into 2020?

DENT: The president plays the victim very well. Even though he is not, he plays the victim. So to the extent that the president continues to be investigated, many of his most hardcore supporters think everything is a witch hunt.

They also believe we've gone through the Mueller investigation, they're inconclusive on obstruction. They didn't to having findings on criminal conspiracy.

So I think, for the Democrats moving down the impeachment path, I don't think it helps them very much. I think Pelosi played this right.

I think, in some respects, the president likes the Democrats to keep talking about impeachment because he thinks it helps him rile up the base with some success.

I think Pelosi has it right. And I think the Democrats don't look particularly effective in all of these investigations because the president has been and his supporters have been essentially thwarting the ability of Congress to investigate him by just not showing up.

And the president is exerting privilege whenever he can, even for a guy like Corey Lewandowski, who has really no right to be protected under privilege.

SAVIDGE: Patti, Senator Elizabeth Warren has been taking hits this week about how she will pay from her health care plan, including from Mayor Pete Buttigieg. Take a listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR PETE BUTTIGIEG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Senator Warren is known for being straightforward and was extremely evasive when asked that question. And we've seen that repeatedly.

I think if you're proud of your plan and it's the right plan, you should defend it in straightforward Terms.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAVIDGE: Patti, this question has been asked before. You expect them go after one another on specific points. But at what point does the criticism start to hurt the overall party?

SOLIS DOYLE: Elizabeth Warren is running a very strong campaign, chock full of strong policy ideas and, more importantly, really strong in terms of organization and outreach.

We see that consistently in the polling. She is rising consistently. And she's rising in our crowd sizes. If you dig deeper in the polls, her supporters are very enthusiastic about her candidacy. You don't see the strong enthusiasm for other candidates, whomever, Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders.

And when you're rising steadily, your opponents are going to try to take you down a peg or two. I think what we need to see is how Elizabeth Warren is, A, going to handle those attacks, whether she becomes defensive or angry, which may not work for here. But we also need to see they're actually going take old.

If I was Elizabeth Warren, if I were advising Elizabeth Warren, I would not address them straight on. I think she's running a fantastic campaign. I would continue to do what she is doing because it is working.

SAVIDGE: Patti Solis Doyle, you would know.

And Charlie Dent, good to see you both. Thank you.

Still ahead, President Trump summoned to a New York courtroom, that's right, over a 2015 altercation involving his security and protestors. A live report, next.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(CHANTING)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:27:29]

SAVIDGE: A New York judge has ordered President Trump to testify in a case involving a violent confrontation between his security guards and protestors in 2015. The incident, which happened outside of Trump Tower, was captured on video.

Five men, who describe themselves as human rights activists of Mexican origin, filed a lawsuit alleged they were assaulted by Trump's security team.

CNN's Polo Sandoval is covering these developments for us.

Polo, what more can you tell us about the lawsuit and the judge's order? And will we see the president in the courtroom?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's the big question here, Martin. Consider this, the New York state judge is describing President Trump's potential testimony as, quote, "indispensable." Yesterday, she ruled that the president has to provide sworn testimony, part of the deposition, which is basically a sworn testimony that would be videotaped and used for the litigation process.

He's the background. This is all going back to a 2015 lawsuit. It was filed by various protesters that were outside Trump Tower in 2015 at an event. They are alleging that members of the security team that worked for then-Candidate Trump, assaulted them. You see that altercation here.

We also have an image showing the protest in question that shows various individuals dressed and mimicking Klansmen, holding that "Make America racist again" sign. Investigate whether -- the plaintiffs in this, alleging that they were assaulted here.

The people that are being sued, President Trump and also the Trump Organization, various members of the security team.

So the question here is, will we actually see President Trump in front of a camera provide that testimony. We'll have to see here. The judge saying that no government official is above the law. And that includes the executive himself.

We have reached out to various members of the Trump legal team to see if they plan to appeal that. We have not heard back.

The case is scheduled for trial next week, Martin. We'll have to see if any appeals will be filed between now and late next week.

SAVIDGE: We think they would.

Polo Sandoval, good to see you. Thank you very much for that.

SANDOVAL: Thanks, Martin.

[13:29:33] SAVIDGE: The White House says it believes that Iran is behind the attack on a major Saudi oil field. And President Trump says the country is going to hell. Just ahead, Iran's foreign minister responds directly to the accusations in an exclusive interview with CNN.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:33:53]

SAVIDGE: The U.S. says it's sending more troops to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates following the attack on Saudi Arabia's main oil field.

President Trump is accusing Iran of being behind the attack. He said the country's regime is on the decline.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: it's too bad what's happening with Iran. It's going to hell. Doing poorly. They are practically broke. They are broke.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAVIDGE: CNN's Nick Paton Walsh spoke with Iran's foreign minister and began asking about the Saudi attacks.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) NICK PATON WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The things

that the United States has accused Iran of so far would, frankly, they call an act of war. They said you fired missiles from sovereign territory into the sovereign territory of another state.

MOHAMMAD JAVAD ZARIF, IRANIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: That's a lie.

WALSH: they've accused you of that. This would normally result in some kind of military retaliation. Do you believe that Donald Trump is gun shy?

ZARIF: No. I believe that he has been the subject of an attempt many times to drag the United States into a war. And he has refused. In spite of the fact that I disagree with many of his policies, I think this is a prudent decision. But it doesn't mean that someone is gun shy to avoid starting a war based on a lie.

[13:35:14]

WALSH: As you said yourself the risk potentially is all-out war if this escalated. So under what circumstances -- President Trump said that he might negotiate, he vacillates on conditions. But under what circumstances would you or the government of Iran being be willing to start negotiations --

(CROSSTALK)

ZARIF: Iran did not leave the negotiating table. There's a negotiating table that is dead. The United States is welcome to come back to that negotiating table.

WALSH: What would they have to do to come back to that table?

ZARIF: They have to respect their signature.

WALSH: They have to go back into the nuclear deal --

(CROSSTALK)

ZARIF: Yes, because leaving that nuclear deal was not a lawful act. Because that deal is not a deal between Iran and President Obama, is not a deal between Iran and the United States. It's a Security Council resolution.

WALSH: In the immediate days ahead, you say there's a risk of all-out war, what are you willing to do in terms of negotiation? What does the United States have to do to get to talk to Iran?

ZARIF: We're willing to talk to our neighbors.

WALSH: Your neighbors?

ZARIF: Yes.

WALSH: Meaning Iraq, Afghanistan.

ZARIF: Saudi Arabia, the Emirates.

WALSH: Not the United States directly?

ZARIF: We don't see any reason.

WALSH: OK. Apart from the fact that it's declared an active war by you.

ZARIF: It wasn't an act of war against the United States and it was, as I said, an agitation for war because it's based on a lie.

WALSH: If they dropped some sanctions, would that encourage you to speak.

ZARIF: No.

WALSH: If they lift the sanctions tomorrow --

ZARIF: If they lift the sanctions that they re-imposed illegally, then that is a different situation.

WALSH: They you would then talk

ZARIF: Then we would consider it.

WALSH: If they did it, they would be going a very long mile --

(CROSSTALK)

ZARIF: If they drop all of the sanctions they have imposed, then it is a different story.

WALSH: Donald Trump threatened yesterday substantially -- he said he would impose substantial new sanctions in Iran. What is left in Iran for the United States to target? You personally have been targeted. What is left in Iran to be hit?

ZARIF: I don't know what. They have done whatever they could.

WALSH: Yes.

ZARIF: And they have not been able to bring us to our knees.

WALSH: So it's an empty threat?

ZARIF: I don't know. I mean, I don't want to use that terminology. No, they can hurt the Iranian people. They have been hurting the Iranian people. They're lying if they tell you that food and medicine is not restricted.

WALSH: You're supposed to go to New York for the United Nations general assembly. Have you received visas?

ZARIF: No.

WALSH: And do you think you should travel? ZARIF: Well, I think I have a right as the foreign minister of Iran.

That is not my personal right, but Iran has a right to be represented at the United Nations in the general assembly at whatever level they want to.

The United States imposed restrictions on our staff in New York that are inhuman. They cannot even send their kids to school. They just denied waivers for our staff members to send their kids to school in New York. These are acts of childish animosity.

Now, they have not issued visas for the advance team of our president, making it hard it for him to go.

WALSH: Too late?

ZARIF: Well, I'm not saying too late but it's very near to being too late.

WALSH: Do you see any merits in going?

ZARIF: Well, I mean, I see no merit in going to the United States, but this is not the United States. This is the United Nations. And I see a lot of merit to be there because we believe in multilateral policy. We believe in multilateralism. We believe that, in this day and age, you cannot resolve your problems unilaterally, even if you are the United States.

WALSH: There's still a vague hope that in some American officials' minds that if you were in New York there might be a quite sideline meeting, a secret channel could be open, and maybe the beginning of diplomacy might start --

(CROSSTALK)

ZARIF: We don't need secret channels.

WALSH: You can rule out any sideline discussions with any American officials if you were in New York?

ZARIF: Yes.

WALSH: Have there been any secret talks with the Trump administration since Donald Trump took office?

ZARIF: No.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE: And that was CNN's Nick Paton Walsh with that exclusive reporting. And thank you very much for that.

[13:39:26]

Coming up, a chilling example of online and on-campus hate. And the young target of that hate who did something courageous. She fought her fear and then she fought back. Her incredible story is going to be next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

SAVIDGE: In the battle against racial hate, this week, the Department of Homeland Security added white supremacists violence to its list of priority threats. It is a first since that department was formed after the 9/11 attacks.

Under this revised strategy, Homeland Security officials say they will also do more to discourage tech companies from hosting Web sites that spread racial hate.

That's where our next story comes in. When this African-American college student was terrorized online by Neo-Nazis, at first, she withdrew in fear. Then she got up, took them to court, and won.

CNN's Sara Sidner has this incredible journey.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the first Taylor Dumpson has sat down and done a television interview after suing and winning her case against the people that were tormenting her online. She actually sat down face to face with one of them and received an apology.

(voice-over): Taylor Dumpson's life changed forever within hours of becoming an American first.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Taylor Dumpson.

(CHEERING)

SIDNER: Dumpson went from being elected American University's first black female student body president in its 125-year history, to being plunged into a world of hate.

TAYLOR DUMPSON, STUDENT LEADER: I was on my way to campus. I was wearing my sorority jacket. And I ended up having to take it off because the hate crime literally had the letters of the sorority on the bananas, so me wearing that button-down I had just gotten, that was me walking around with a target on my back.

[13:45:09]

SIDNER: A still unidentified person committed the on-campus hate crime. Stringing up bananas with nooses with the initials of the historically black sorority Dumpson belongs to and other racist messages.

Days later, she was under attack online by Neo-Nazis, spurred on by Andrew England, the creator of one of the most-prolific Neo-Nazi Web sites.

DAVID BRODY, LAWYERS' COMMITTEE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS UNDER LAW: He told his many, many followers to basically go get her. SIDNER: A hate-filled feeding frenzy began when the Web site published

her name, photo, contact information, and social media accounts.

The Anti-Defamation League was the first to warn Dumpson. They e- mailed her saying she became a national target for hatred.

DUMPSON: I was home alone, I closed my blinds, I locked all the doors. I turned all the lights out. And the way people tell you when there's a hurricane or a tornado, you're to hide in a hallway and get small and crouch down. That's what I did. I rocked in the fetal position sobbing and crying.

I had to take a screen shot of the e-mail and send it to my mom and dad because I could not talk.

SIDNER: After months of online harassment, she was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress syndrome. Everything from her ability to study to her ability to eat was impacted.

DUMPSON: I was terrified. I didn't know where they were. I didn't know where they were. I didn't know if they were coming to find me. I didn't know if they knew where I was.

SIDNER: Dumpson decided to fight back. With the help of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, she sued some of the people investigators could find that trolled her. She sued the Web site and England, it's creator.

(on camera): What would you say to the Andrew Englands of the world?

DUMPSON: You picked the wrong one. And you picked somebody that wasn't going to back down.

SIDNER (voice-over): Dumpson won her case.

BRODY: To the best of my knowledge, this is the first court decision in the country that held that online harassment can interfere with public accommodations.

SIDNER: The judgement equated online harassment with physical harassment.

BRODY: Civil rights laws do not stop where the Cloud begins.

SIDNER: England did not respond for comment. Neither he, nor a representative for his company showed up in court.

The judge handed Dumpson a default $725,000 judgment. And separately, she received something that nearly now one does, a face-to-face apology, not from England but from one of the trolls. She agreed not to say his name or exactly the words exchanged as part of a restorative justice settlement.

(on camera): Online, especially, people want to snapback, clapback, attack. And that's not what you did here. DUMPSON: I think we always have the opportunity and the possibility to

grow and for me in was really important to, even though you're a white supremist, even though you're a Neo-Nazi, even though you think like that, I don't think you're always going to think like that, and it doesn't have to be that way.

SIDNER: The man who apologized was the only one to come forward. He also promised to walk away from online hate and do community service.

When it comes to Taylor Dumpson, she was accepted to law school. She is now a law student, but she says she doesn't disclose where because she knows she will always be a target. The hate has not completely stopped.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE: What a wonderful victory.

Sara Sidner, thank you very much for that story.

Still ahead, he is one of the NFL's most talented receivers. Now Antonio Brown is out of a job again amid allegations of sexual abuse. We'll have the latest on the on-going saga, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:52:30]

SAVIDGE: America's largest retailer, Walmart, announcing it is going to stop selling E-cigarettes as the number of deaths tied to vaping grows and federal officials make moves to crack down on the industry.

Walmart released a statement saying this, "Given the growing federal, state, and local regulatory complexity and uncertainty regarding e- cigarettes, the retailer will stop selling them as soon as its current inventory runs out."

Then there's this. A shocking shopping experience at a mall in Chicago. Video of this has gone viral. A black SUV suddenly drives into the mall crashing into kiosks. Shoppers can be heard screaming as they jump out of the way. Amazingly, nobody was hurt.

Bystanders were able to hold the suspect until police arrested him. Investigators say they're looking at the possibility that a medical issue may be to blame.

Now to the sudden departure of Antonio Brown. Brown's short stint with the New England Patriots ended after just one game and 11 days on the team. The Pats cut Brown yesterday amid new allegations of sexual misconduct and intimidation. Today. Brown is taking to social media with a flurry of messages.

CNN's Nick Valencia is following these latest developments.

This thing is not over by any means, is it? NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: No it's not. He has been relatively

quiet about the allegations surrounding him up to this point, and overnight was very active on social media, Martin. He was posting on Twitter, Instagram, referencing these allegations against him.

For those that have been following this case closely, it may come as no surprise that he was cut after just 11 days by the New England Patriots.

Every player that signs a contract in the NFL has a clause within their contract saying if they have conduct detrimental to the team or the league they can be cut.

Effectively, all the Patriots had to prove was that he knew about the allegations prior to signing with them.

We know, according to a source close to the case, that there were pre- suit settlement discussions involving representatives for Brown as well as his accuser, Britney Taylor. Taylor has accused the star NFL athlete of rape as well as other sexual misconduct.

She has not filed criminal charges though. This is a federal civil suit.

What may have been the final straw for the New England Patriots is what happened earlier this week. A second accuser coming forward saying Brown hired her to paint a mural in his home and, at that point, emerged while she was painting the mural and he was naked holding only a small towel over his genitals, according to the interview she gave "Sports Illustrated."

It is something the Patriots were clearly tired of talking about.

Listen to Bill Belichick a couple days ago being asked about this by reporters. He walked out of the press conference after just four minutes.

[13:55:07]

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL BELICHICK, NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS COACH: I'm not going to have any comment on any of the off-the-field situations or questions on that. Not going to get into that.

I think I've already addressed this. We're going to get ready for the Jets here. Happy to answer any football questions. The rest of it I'm done with.

Yes. I'm good. Ok? Thank you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VALENCIA: Then Friday afternoon, Antonio Brown gets cut.

Here's what the NFL released last night in a statement about where their investigation stands. "We have, as of yet, made no findings regarding these issues. The investigation is ongoing and will be pursued vigorously and expeditiously.

As long as Mr. Brown is a free agent, placement on the commissioner's exempt list is not appropriate. If he is signed by a club, such placement may become appropriate at any time depending on the status of the investigation."

At this point, Martin, it would be shocking to a lot of us if another team signs Antonio Brown knowing he could be found on the commissioner's exempt list. They would have to pay him but he couldn't play.

SAVIDGE: It could happen.

VALENCIA: It could but he's missed out on a lot of money, $30 million with the Oakland Raiders and $9 million guaranteed with the New England Patriots. Also cut by Nike with his endorsement there.

SAVIDGE: Nick, thank you very much.

(CROSSTALK)

SAVIDGE: Thank you.

Still ahead, Vice President Biden -- that is, the former vice president blasts Trump over a reported call that Trump had with a foreign country. Did the president ask Ukraine to investigate his political rival? What we know about what happened and what we don't, next.

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