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Brexit Super Saturday; What's Next For Trump's Impeachment Inquiry; Rugby World Cup. Aired 5-6a ET
Aired October 19, 2019 - 05:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
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JEREMY CORBYN, LEADER, U.K. LABOUR PARTY: Listen, for example, to the TUC general secretary, who says this -- she does represent an organization that has 6 million members affiliated to it. This deal, Mr. Speaker, would be a disaster for working people. It
would hammer the economy, cost of jobs and sell workers' rights down the river.
Listen to the representative of the British manufacturers. This is -- the members might care to listen to these comments. The commitments to trading relationships have gone. Under this deal, differences in regulation between the U.K. And the E.U., without cost and bureaucracy.
Our companies will face a lack of clarity, inhibiting investment and planning. Listen to the Green Alliance, who said the deal amounted to a very sad Brexit read from a climate perspective.
The message is clear, the steel is -- deal is not good for jobs, damaging for our industry and a threat to our environment and our natural world. It is not a good deal for our country and future generations will feel the impact. It should be voted down today by this house.
I totally understand the frustration and fatigue across the country and in this house but we simply cannot vote for a deal that is even worse than the one that was rejected three times.
The government's own economic analysis shows of this deal would make the poorest regions even poorer and cost each person in this country over 2000 pounds a year. If we vote for a deal that makes our constituents poorer, we are not likely to be forgiven for doing that.
Mr. Speaker, the government is claiming that if we support their deal, it will get Brexit done. And that backing them today is the only way to stop a no deal. I simply say, nonsense. Supporting the government this afternoon would merely fire the starting pistol in a race to the bottom in regulation and standards.
And if anyone had any doubts about this, we only have to listen to what their own honorable members have been saying, like the one yesterday who let the cat out of the bag, saying that members should back this deal as it means we could leave with no deal by 2020. The cat has truly gotten out of the bag.
So can the prime minister confirm whether this is the case and that if a free-trade agreement has not been done, it would mean Britain falling onto world tried -- in terms by December of next year, with only Northern Ireland having preferential access to the E.U. market?
No wonder the foreign secretary said that this represents, a cracking deal for Northern Ireland. They would retain frictionless access to the single market.
It does beg the question, why can't the rest of the U.K. get a cracking deal by maintaining access to the single market?
He said, and I quote, "It allows the economy to develop and protect the single market."
Some members of the House welcome that economy but I did not think that included the Conservative and Unionist Party. The prime minister declared in the summer, under no circumstances will I allow the E.U. or anyone else to create any kind of division down the Irish Sea.
You cannot trust a word that he is saying. Mr. Speaker, voting for a deal today won't end Brexit, it will not deliver certainty. And the people should have the final say.
Labour is not prepared to sell out the communities and that we represent. -- the communities that we represent. We are not prepared -- we are not prepared to sell out their future and we will not back this sell-out deal. This is about our communities now and about our future generations.
BERCOW: Mr. Prime Minister.
BORIS JOHNSON, U.K. PRIME MINISTER: Mr. Speaker, I must confess I am disappointed in his words today, because I thought he would arise to the occasion and see that the electorate -- I believe his own electorate would want to do -- would want to get Brexit done.
I must say that I thought he would wish to reflect the will of the people who voted for Brexit in such numbers and have waited for a long time. He is wrong about environmental and social protections.
This government -- this country will maintain high standards and we will lead in environmental protection and social protection across Europe and the world. We lead in our commitment to become carbon neutral by 2050.
And as I told him before, this freedom -- Brexit gives us the opportunity to do things that are deeply desired by the British people, such as banding in live export of animals. -- banning the live export of animals. And there are many things we can do differently and better.
He is wrong, Mr. Speaker, about business. The overwhelming view of business is at that there are great opportunities through Brexit but also as was said by the former chairman of the Remain campaign and the governor of the Bank of England, this is a good deal for the British economy.
And indeed, as I look ahead, the only risk I see to the British economy are that catastrophic plans of the right honorable gentlemen and his party.
What British business wants is certainty and stability of getting Brexit done on October 31 and then the opportunity to build a new feature with our European partners and to do free trade deals around the world.
Mr. Speaker, he is wrong about Northern Ireland, which will exit the E.U. customs union, along with the rest of the U.K. And I may say in defiance of what the commission and the Irish government has intended. He talks about trust. This is a right honorable gentlemen. I do not wish to be adversarial today.
This is a right honorable gentlemen. I don't think we should be necessarily adversarial today. He doesn't trust. He has not been willing to trust the people of this country by wanting them the right to adjudicate on them on policy. He will not trust the people.
And he doesn't trust the people by delivering on the results of their referendum in 2016. Mr. Speaker, I suggest in all humility to the House, that they should ignore the pleadings of the honorable gentlemen and vote for an excellent deal that will take this country and take the whole of Europe forward.
BERCOW: Mr. Kenneth Clarke.
KENNETH CLARKE, MP: Mr. Speaker, the prime minister began his statement by saying how rare it had been in this house ever for people to support federalism and the United States of law. I entirely agree. Federalism is as rare in this country as it is nowadays in the other 27 member states.
But would he accept that for the last 50 years the Conservative Party, the vast majority of the Conservative Party and all four conservative prime ministers, believed membership of the European Union gave us a stronger voice politically in the world as one of the three leading members of the European Union and gave us access to a free-trade market that enabled us to build a strong and competitive economy.
So would he reassure me, as I assured him I will vote for his deal once we have given -- to it, that when he goes on to negotiate the eventual long-term arrangements he will seek a solution where we have the same completely open access across the Channel, across the Irish border.
CLARKE: To trade and investment in both directions with the European Union that we have now, even if we have to sacrifice the political benefits we have enjoyed from the membership of the union? JOHNSON: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I wish to agree with my right
honorable friend in at least part of his analysis, because the skepticism across the E.U. and across the continent at the moment, is about federalism and at the desired ability European Union superstate.
I think he is right in that but unfortunately that skepticism has not percolated up to the elite to run the E.U. and those who set the agenda in Brussels. And with --
BERCOW: Order, order. Every member who has the floor must be heard.
The prime minister.
JOHNSON: I think I am making a valid point, which is that in Brussels, the message that my right honorable friend said has not been perfectly understood and they continue with a large number of a federalist projects.
I was at the European Council only the last couple of days, hearing the distinguished president of France, calling for a union bancaire, Mr. Speaker, a banking union.
There is a strong desire to intensify by creating a defense pact. There is a strong desire -- a banking union, Mr. Speaker.
There is a strong desire to continue the process -- that's B-A-N-C-A- I-R-E, Mr. Speaker -- to continue the process of integration in a way that I think would lead to skepticism, not just from my right honorable friend but also millions around the E.U.
And I can give him, Mr. Speaker, the absolute reassurance hat in the course -- that in the course of the negotiations, in which we would want the entire house to be involved and take part, we will ensure that we have exactly what I think he desires, a zero tariff, zero quota, free-trade partnership so that there is the maximum trade between our economies.
BERCOW: Mr. Blackford.
IAN BLACKFORD, SNP: Thank you, Mr. Speaker, I will join you in thanking all the staff.
And thank you to the prime minister for the advanced statement.
Mr. Speaker, Northern Ireland, 13, Scotland, zero. That's the number of references to Northern Ireland in the statement. Not one reference to Scotland. Mr. Speaker, the prime minister has returned from Brussels to present the deal that he knows, that we all know is actually worse than Theresa May's deal.
A deal that would see Scotland shafted by this United Kingdom government, left at an economic disadvantage, with Scotland's views and interests totally disregarded by this prime minister and his government.
Mr. Speaker, the Scottish National Party could not have been clearer. We would support any mandate to approach the European Union to remain in the single market and the customs union or simply remain in the European Union altogether.
Yet the prime minister has made is clear he has not and is not interested in meaningful discussions with the SNP or with our Scottish Government. He and his cronies at Number 10 don't care about Scotland. This Tory government has sold Scotland out and once again they have let Scotland down.
But rightfully, Northern Ireland has been allowed special arrangements to remain in the E.U. single market and customs union but the prime minister will not afford Scotland the same arrangement. He did not even consider giving Scotland a fair deal.
Mr. Speaker, despite the fact that the Scottish people, like the people of Northern Ireland, voted overwhelmingly to remain in the European Union, this prime minister has never entertained the notion of giving Scotland the same arrangements that Northern Ireland gets in this deal.
BLACKFORD: The truth is that this prime minister does not care about Scotland, he and his government have ignored the Scottish government and the Scottish people. Mr. Speaker, not a single MP who cares about Scotland's future should consider this deal. They should vote the deal down.
Any and all assessments of any Brexit outcome show that the United Kingdom and that Scotland, will be poorer, no matter how we leave the European Union. People in Scotland know the prime minister and his Brexit fan boys and the vote leave campaign have shafted Scotland.
Mr. Speaker, England is getting what it voted for. Wales is getting what it voted for -- Wales is getting what it voted for. And northern is getting a special deal. But Scotland is being ignored and treated as a second-class nation by this government.
Can the prime minister tell us now, how will he justify himself to the people of Scotland in the general election, when he cannot and when he fails and win the Brexit fan club fails?
Will he finally respect the mandate that the Scottish people voted for and let them have a say in our future?
JOHNSON: I thank the right honorable gentlemen. I am sure he will want to join me in congratulating the England rugby team on a 40-16 victory over Australia.
And Mr. Speaker, I must say that I think he is being a little bit childish in his response, because I did mention England and I did mention Wales. The reason Northern Ireland is a particular subject is that there are particular circumstances in Northern Ireland at the border, which deserve particular respect and sensitivity and that is what they have received in the deal.
This is a great deal for England, for Wales, for Scotland and it is a great deal for Northern Ireland.
To the people of Scotland, they now have the chance, a champion of their MP, to take back control of their fishery from the end of next year and allow the people at last to enjoy the benefits of their spectacular marine wealth in a way they would be denied under a party who will hand back control of Scottish fishing to Brussels.
BERCOW: Mr. Smith.
IAIN DUNCAN SMITH, CONSERVATIVE MP: Mr. Speaker.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN ANCHOR: Right, so, there we have the beginnings of the debate. And we've stayed with it some length, so you can get a flavor for it.
What we've heard so far, the prime minister setting out the motion that is to approve the agreement he made with Brussels. The leader of the opposition is basically saying, no, they will not vote for this and giving the reasons why.
And a variety of other party members now coming forward, including the father of the House, Ken Clarke, about their reasons.
Bianca is with me as well as Nic Robertson.
Good morning to you both.
BIANCA NOBILO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning.
And before we go further, what did you make of the prime minister and the way he spoke this morning?
NOBILO: He was drawing upon the most macropolitical philosophical argument that he possibly could and that was to say that Britain has for a long time sat uncomfortably within the European Union. To paraphrase, forget the practicalities of this, Britain does not suit being in the European Union because it doesn't want to approach ever closer union; it doesn't want a greater federation of states. It's not going to adopt the euro anytime soon.
So he's trying to make that argument, saying we need to leave. We need to move on as a country. And we all need to accept that the broadest amount MPs can at least support that Britain has never been enthusiastic about the position in the E.U.
But Jeremy Corbyn's response is just because even if that's true, it doesn't mean we need to support this deal because it's the only deal on the table.
QUEST: Nic, he has a valid point that many of us have made over the years.
QUEST: It is that the U.K. has stood on the outside, throwing rocks and sticking poles and spikes into the wheels of the European Union. It couldn't continue halfhearted.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: And we are an island. And I think that has defined our history and the way that we regard of rest of the European nations, all on one continent. We regard our fisheries as our fisheries.
We regard the negotiations with the European Union over those a contentious issue and only a tiny part of the British economy but such a touchstone issue of what it means to be dealing with partners who have a voracious appetite for the fish of your shores. Boris Johnson brought this up again today, talking about the Scots. So this is another bit. This is how we on an island view the European Union in many ways as scavengers of our resources.
And there has never been a political narrative in Britain that has tried to unthread and unpick that and that has sat badly with us, halfhearted. And sometimes, there's been absolute bitter anger at the European Union.
QUEST: But how is it going to go today?
At the end of the day, that's really what we need to know. I mean, there's this Letwin amendment, which I have a copy of here which -- well, I'm sure you're familiar with it backwards, no doubt by heart.
NOBILO: Right, quite sure.
QUEST: "This House has considered the matter but withholds approval unless and until implementing legislation is passed."
Now if that amendment is passed, then the government has basically said they're withdrawing consideration of the bill.
NOBILO: Well, the most damaging thing about that amendment is, today, had the prime minister's deal passed in accordance with the Benn Act, he wouldn't have had to ask for an extension.
But if the Letwin amendment passes, then he still has to ask for an extension because they haven't formally approved the deal and they have wait for the rest of the withdrawal legislation to move its way through Parliament.
So then Britain would be in this limbo period, where it hadn't potentially left by 31st of October. For those who want to see Britain remain, strike a different deal, have a second referendum, it would then present opportunities for them to amend the legislation going through the House of Commons so they could obtain those things.
ROBERTSON: I think for Boris Johnson, this represents the biggest of conundrums, do or die leaving by October 31st.
This is a challenge in another form to that, then he will have to navigate. He believed he had mechanisms to navigate around the necessities of the Benn Act, saying he would have to extend the deadline for leaving the European Union to the 31st of January of next year.
This brings the hurdle up in a different way and it just makes it much harder for him to stick to his word. This is perhaps the worst nightmare, in a way, because it clouds the issue that he had managed to reduce down to simple deal or no deal motions today.
NOBILO: And Letwin and his supporters would call this an insurance policy just to absolutely guarantee that Britain can't crash out without a deal, even though it would be contingent on E.U. extending in a fashion that mirrors the Letwin amendment but those with Boris Johnson call this a wrecking ball because it removes that binary choice.
QUEST: We will consider this in more detail as the morning wears on. It still hasn't called the amendments yet. On the numbers, Anna Stewart has been crunching the numbers on the numbers.
What have they shown?
Does the prime minister have a realistic, never mind theoretical, does he have a realistic chance of getting the deal through, which would mean defeating the Letwin amendment?
ANNA STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is genuinely too close to call, I mean, it really, really is looking at the numbers. But they've all been shifting, particularly within the last half hour. Last night, we saw Johnson get maybe 500 votes, he needs 320.
This morning he may have five more, 310. We have had a tweet from the chairman of the ERG, the European Research Group, that is the hardline Brexiteers in the Conservative Party, many of whom did not vote for Theresa May's deal.
Some of them ministers in Boris Johnson's government, so they're on board. But in the last half hour, Steve Baker tweeting, "ERG advice to MPs, one, vote for Boris' deal in the national interest. Two, support the legislation; i.e., let's not let it get watered down by the opponents. Three, vote for Boris throughout to give him maximum opportunity to deliver for our country."
Now the ERG is not a party, they do not have a whip.
NOBILO: However, this is a clear indication many more may be switching over. So I'd say the numbers are looking ever better in Boris Johnson's favor -- Richard.
QUEST: While you're talking, Anna Stewart, I want to go back to the House and listen to Nigel Dodds. He's one of the DUP MPs.
NIGEL DODDS, DUP MP: Indeed, those who sought the leadership of the Tory Party said that in our conference.
Will he now abide by that and please reconsider the fact that we must leave as one nation together? There may be special circumstances for Northern Ireland but that can
only be with the consent of the people of Northern Ireland, Unionists and Nationalists together. That is the basis in which the peace process, the political process has advanced. He must respect that.
JOHNSON: Well, Mr. Speaker, I must say -- well, first of all, I said I'm grateful to the right honorable gentleman in this sense that, together, he and I and the rest of his group did make a case powerfully to the E.U., that it was necessary for Northern Ireland to come out of the customs union, which was not, by the way, a point that was accepted by them.
And we were successful in that. Insofar as he's critical of the arrangements -- and by the way, the significant point about a customs union is that it is a union that sets its own tariffs and duties at the perimeter around that customs union.
That is what the whole of the U.K. will do, including Northern Ireland. And it was not, let's be frank, Mr. Speaker, what the European Commission --
QUEST: So the DUP has decided it is not supporting the deal. The government needs those votes. As we take a break it's difficult to see where the votes come from. We'll take a break and be back in a moment.
JOHNSON: It is now so urgent for us to move on and to build a new relationship with our friends in the E.U., on the basis of a new deal, a deal that can heal the rift in British politics, unite, unite, unite the warring instincts in our soul.
And now is the time for this great House of Commons to come together and bring the country together today.
NOBILO: Welcome back to CNN's special Brexit coverage. I'm Bianca Nobilo with Richard Quest outside the U.K. Parliament and right now the House of Commons is debating what Brexit should look like as the clock ticks down.
QUEST: Boris Johnson made a strong defense. You just heard it there and took on a full front attack from Labour, the Labour leader. The Scottish National Party calling it a sellout. And when the vote is taken, the prime minister will need 320 members of the Parliament to back him up.
NOBILO: Ben Kentish, political correspondent with "The Independent," great to have you on the program, I guess the big question of the day is, can the prime minister get this deal through? BEN KENTISH, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, THE INDEPENDENT: It looks like he's now got the numbers, the Brexiteers, the Eurosceptic part of his polity, almost all say they'll back it. They're up to about 14 opposition and independent MPs saying they will, so, yes, it looks like --
QUEST: Hang on, hang on --
KENTISH: We may not get to that, we may not get to that.
QUEST: Where do you think he's up to now, 308, 309, 310 --
KENTISH: I think he's slightly over that. There are more that will come that haven't announced. I think he's probably getting up to 315.
NOBILO: It's interesting when you listen to the key members of the Labour Party this party this morning, they're at pains to say they would remove the whip. With the most harsh restriction that they could defy Jeremy Corbyn, the most severe instruction that a leader can give, they voted with the prime minister today.
But then it all comes to the Letwin amendment which we were just talking about.
How can we calculate the numbers for this?
QUEST: Now just a minute, the Letwin amendment which I assume the Speaker is going to come to, once these statements, he starts calling them, this is the wrecking ball because if this passes, then the government says it's withdrawing the consideration today.
KENTISH: Yes, they said they'll send home MPs before the final vote takes place but what they'll do is introduce this bill on Tuesday.
NOBILO: Why is that helpful for them?
KENTISH: It's helpful for them, because effectively, these MPs are trying to ensure that Britain doesn't leave the E.U. without a deal. Two things need to happen. MPs need to hold a vote approving the deal and the legislation needs to pass.
It doesn't matter, government won't have the vote first. And then the MPs are saying we don't trust you to absolutely introduce this bill to go through, let's pass that all first, then we'll have the vote on the deal.
Number 10 would be happy on that because they would love that clear- cut and stop Boris Johnson.
QUEST: But as a practical matter, if they don't approve it today, if he does send them home, then he has to sign the letter?
KENTISH: Yes, I think that's the way we're heading, it's not great for Boris Johnson who said do or die, we would leave it on the table without an extension. But they are confident they will get through that law in time and hold the vote and still leave by the 31st.
QUEST: Upon what basis do they have that confidence, bearing in mind, if they do have this enabling legislation to go through, there's a myriad of delaying tactics over these 30 or 40 pieces of legislation?
KENTISH: They're confidently if they've gotten the numbers to approve the deal it's very hard to see they won't also vote that day.
NOBILO: So the only argument that Boris Johnson can try to enforce is not the alternative that his deal will be a no deal somehow but it would be his deal or just continuing to prolong the process and that the country is fed up and Parliament needs to accept the fact that Britain voted that way in the referendum.
KENTISH: Right, it has shifted. It's not this deal or no deal. It's let's get Brexit done.
KENTISH: The phrase is very popular in focus groups, voters on both sides. Sick of the whole thing now. They really just want it to be over with.
QUEST: They want it to be over with. But I come back to the practicalities of it. You say it has got the votes here, he'll have the votes in the enabling legislation. But he won't know whether he's got the votes until they have the vote.
And that will be after the Letwin amendment?
KENTISH: That's right. That's right. So Tuesday now becomes Super Tuesday, super Saturday has faded away. And now this brings forward we think the deal and hold the first and second reading, the first stages in Parliament. And only then will we know for sure if MPs will pass the deal.
QUEST: Just to clarify, you're saying, if they come back on Tuesday, they will actually start the business of passing the withdrawal act?
QUEST: Which they would hope to do in what, three or four months -- oh, there we go.
QUEST: Now we know we're off to the races. Yes. Stop Brexit, there we go. We'll have more of our special parliamentary coverage in just a moment.
By the way, we'll talk about whoever that chap is and why he keeps shouting. We'll talk about the amendment that's about to happen, after the break.
GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR: Live pictures from London this hour. We've been watching the mother of all Parliaments in action. The British prime minister, Boris Johnson, trying to get his Brexit deal over the hump, to get the votes for Brexit before the October 31st deadline at the end of the month. And the debate there ensues.
HOWELL: Our teams are on the ground there. We'll continue to follow that story.
Welcome back to viewers here in the United States and around the world. I'm George Howell in Atlanta.
Other news we're following, the impeachment inquiry of the U.S. president rolls on and a familiar name keeps popping up, that name Rudy Giuliani. CNN has learned President Trump's personal attorney pushed the State Department and then the White House to grant a visa to a former Ukrainian official.
Manu Raju tells us who it was and what he may have been promising.
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: New details about how Rudy Giuliani used his influence to try to get dirt on Joe Biden. And then later tried to push the federal government to reverse a decision that it had made.
Now according to testimony of George Kent, a career diplomat, gave to congressional investigators earlier in the week, we are told from four sources that Kent had objected Giuliani's efforts to try to get a visa for Victor Shulkin. He's a former Ukrainian prosecutor whom Biden tried to get removed from that post.
Giuliani wanted to get Shulkin a visa. The State Department rejected that request and Giuliani went around the State Department and urged the White House to grant him a visa. Now the visa was never granted and then Giuliani carried out secret interviews with Shokin via Skype.
And those interview form the basis of a number of records that had dirt on not just the Bidens but also Marie Yovanovitch, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, a lot of these allegations unsubstantiated.
But nevertheless, Giuliani took those records to the State Department, asked the State Department to investigate. Later those were turned over to the inspector general at the State Department, who turned it over to Capitol Hill to further investigate this matter.
Shulkin has accused Marie Yovanovitch for being too close to Joe Biden, which is one reason why he was seeking her removal from the post and President Trump removed her from that post as well after Giuliani had targeted her.
And that caused much controversy in the previous weeks and months in causing the resignation of at least one high-level adviser, who was concerned that she was being unfairly targeted for political reasons.
But all of this, Giuliani's efforts form the basis of what the whistleblower complained, that the president used his office to try to benefit himself politically and tried to urge a foreign government to investigate and dig up dirt on a political rival.
And, of course, that forms the basis of the Democrats' impeachment inquiry. It's just another detail that shows the depth of Giuliani's efforts to draw U.S. policy towards Ukraine -- Manu Raju, CNN, Capitol Hill.
HOWELL: To put it in perspective, Jacob Parakilas is an associate at LSE IDEAS, the London School of Economics foreign policy think tank, joining us from London.
Good to have you with us.
JACOB PARAKILAS, ASSOCIATE, LSE IDEAS: Good morning.
HOWELL: So what we're learning from the testimony of that career diplomat, George Kent, that the State Department objected to Rudy Giuliani trying to get visas for a Ukrainian prosecutor. And that Mr. Giuliani's personal attorney went around State to urge the White House to grant that visa.
We understand he never got that visa. But the question, how damning is this, in your view, on top of all of the other testimony, the evidence, the text messages that have come to bear?
PARAKILAS: It's damning but it's hard to keep track of all of the different threads of this story, particularly because the -- not the transcript but the memorandum that the White House released initially, by way of trying to explain its actions, was already so damning, filling in the back story is helpful.
It's particularly helpful for the House committees that are working on this impeachment inquiry. But it's slightly like being in the Upside Down because the damning thing, the thing that the White House released at first -- and we're now getting more of the story and I'm sure there's much more of the story to tell.
But everyone makes the analogy to Watergate. Watergate had the moment of the release of the tapes, the final turning point in what had been a long and complicated story.
This has started with the public revelation. And so I think the expectations that we, as the viewing public, as American voters, as people invested to some degree in the outcome of this story, the expectation we have of it is somewhat subverted.
We already know the contours of the story, now we're just finding the details, rather than finding the big twist at the end of it.
HOWELL: With Congress investigating the outgoing Energy Secretary, Rick Perry, and his contact with Ukrainian officials, the department's assistant secretary argues the documents that are requested, they say they're confidential and might be protected by executive privilege.
So the U.S. Energy Department won't comply, as we've seen others, won't comply with the subpoena for documents.
HOWELL: Does that strategy hold?
PARAKILAS: It depends on what the goal of the strategy is. I think ultimately the courts will find that those documents, or a substantial fraction of them, are not covered by executive privilege in the face -- particularly in the face of an impeachment inquiry. And there the Nixon precedent is quite helpful to Congress.
The real question is how long does it take. We all know the congressional calculus. We know the math that the Democrats have to convince 20 Republican senators to remove Trump from office, if you're following impeachment through to its legal conclusion.
And the Republicans will be trying to run the clock out to the point where it all gets tied up into the election. And you can turn it into a purely political issue, rather than being a question of propriety.
If that's the strategy on the administration's side, to run the clock out, to run it through the courts as slowly as possible, it might succeed. As I said, I do think the courts will ultimately view such documents within the purview of Congress to request or order their release. But the delay strategy may bear fruit.
HOWELL: Jacob Parakilas, thank you again for that.
That's the political news here stateside. But CNN is across the pond and live in London, where again, the question is, will Boris Johnson be able to get his Brexit deal over the hump?
Will he get the votes to beat the Brexit deadline before October 31st?
Our teams are on the ground. We'll have the story for you live.
And the Rugby World Cup heats up with the quarterfinals round. We'll take you live to Tokyo. We'll take a look at four heavyweights taking the pitch today in Japan. Stay with us.
(MUSIC PLAYING) HOWELL: The Rugby World Cup in Japan, four of the world's heavyweights are squaring off today. In the first game, England soundly defeated Australia 40-16 and moved to the semifinals. Australia are out.
And soon, a defending champion New Zealand will take on Ireland. Our Christina MacFarlane is in the middle of it all, live in Tokyo, to talk about Super Saturday.
Tell us more about what's happening with that England-Australia game?
CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: George, it's shaping up to be a Super Saturday as you say. We are at the business end of the tournament. We just witnessed the clash of two rugby titans here between Japan and England. We thought this was a game of narrow margins, perhaps even suffocatingly tight.
Instead, it was all England. In the first top two tries, two conversions actually gave England a comfortable cushion. Australia at one point, 11 points down, trailing the English. The English have a habit of choking in the second half. The Australians have a habit of chasing them down.
That is not what we saw in this game. The Green and Gold could not compete with the Rugby World Cup ending on a whimper, the final score 40-16 to England. It means, George, that England has now defeated Australia seven times in a row.
And the last time Australia -- or England actually beat Australia in the World Cup there, she reached the final in 2007. And of course, won it in history in 2003. They're the only team on the hemisphere to do it. In tonight's game they will go on to face New Zealand or Ireland. That game due to kick off here in 30 minutes' time.
HOWELL: That particular game was mentioned in the halls of Parliament today as they discussed Brexit.
Christina, to get your thoughts about the All Blacks versus Ireland, how is that shaping up?
MACFARLANE: Yes, well, it's going to be another cracker, George. We're standing here about to go in. For an unprecedented third straight Rugby World Cup crown here in Japan this year.
It's been 12 years since the All Blacks have been beaten at the World Cup. Ireland by contrast have never got further than the quarterfinals of the World Cup and they've never beaten the Southern Hemisphere side since 2011.
But they actually defeated New Zealand two out of three times that they played them in the last year. There was discipline on the defensive side, who will certainly try to slow the All Blacks' pace down. And obviously, in the mix is there are two legendary coaches playing for their careers, Joe Schmidt and Steve Hansen, both set to move on after the Rugby World Cup. It'll interesting to see who will get it tonight, George. HOWELL: Christina, we'll stay in touch with you.
Let's cross over now live to London, our teams on the ground there. Richard Quest following the story, whether the British prime minister will make it over the hump.
And does he get the votes?
What's it look like so far, Richard?
QUEST: That's a very good question. Earlier, a woman suggested he was getting the votes and it looks like possibly he would get them, George. As always, as in life, anything you need to know just -- and by the way, if you've got a question that you want answered, you can tweet me @richardquest. My digital device is many.
And you can tweet me directly at @richardquest. I'll do my best to answer you.
Anna Stewart, she's our psephologist extraordinaire in terms of the vote numbers today.
STEWART: Yes, I've had my calculator out and trying to see if Boris Johnson can get the magic number of 320 votes.
QUEST: Ben Kentish from "The Independent," you may have heard him, he said he might have got it done?
STEWART: I think he may have. It's shifted but I will say it's too close to call. But here is what's changed today, the ERG, the hardline Brexiteers who did not support Theresa May.
STEWART: Some of them now are in government but the chairman of the group tweeted to say that the ERG recommend MPs vote for this deal. This is a big development. They are not a homogeneous group. Some may not come on board. But if most come on board, they'll be for Boris Johnson.
QUEST: He has to get more of the opposition?
STEWART: This takes into account Labour MPs either abstaining or voting with him.
QUEST: Is there any feeling similarly to what we had that with the voting, because let's just get Brexit done?
Let's get Brexit done, rather than some deeply held belief one way or the other?
That doesn't apply to the ERG --
STEWART: No, but the Labour. We had that vote of five in the last vote --
STEWART: -- we had 19 who wrote to the E.U. leader saying we want to do it by the end of October, because they're worried about their constituencies because some of them voted for Brexit. We have them either voting for or abstaining. And a couple of others have said they will vote this deal. So take that into account, abstaining or voting from Labour MPs or the ERG, it will be very close.
QUEST: Right, but we won't get that vote before we've had the Letwin vote.
QUEST: And the Letwin vote, if that passes, withdraws all of this for an extension.
STEWART: We'll talk numbers later in the week.
QUEST: Anna Stewart with the numbers, as they look at the moment.
Now if you're joining us in the United States, "NEW DAY" is ahead for you. As we continue here in London, the debate continues. We've yet to get to the amendments. And that, of course, is the final vote in itself.
Because the news never stops, neither do we. This is CNN.