Return to Transcripts main page
ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Trump Demands to Learn Whistleblower's Identity as GOP's Grassley Says "The Law Protects the Whistleblower"; Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ is Interviewed About Billionaire Slamming Senator Warren for Wealth Tax and the Presidential Race; Former Ukraine Ambassador: I Felt Threatened By Trump; Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA) Discuss About Yovanovitch's Security Meant By White House; Report: Republicans Consider Moving Trump Ally Rep. Jordan To Intel CMTE For Impeachment Hearings; Ex-Pompeo Adviser Contradicts Pompeo, Says He Pleaded With Him To Publicly Back Former Ukraine Ambassador; Trump Demands To Learn Whistleblower's Identity As GOP's Grassley Says "The Law Protects The Whistleblower." Aired 7-8p ET
Aired November 4, 2019 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: ... point. Stephanie Elam, thanks very much. And to our viewers, thanks very much for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer in THE SITUATION ROOM. Erin Burnett OUTFRONT starts right now.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, threatened, Trump's former Ambassador to Ukraine says she felt threatened by the President and there were ominous warnings to her about our security. Plus, a top State Department official's testimony contradicts Mike Pompeo. Was the Secretary of State caught in a lie? Plus, we go to a swing district, in a swing state that Trump won. Is he about to win it again? Let's go out front.
And good evening. I'm Erin Burnett. OUTFRONT tonight, threatened, Trump's former Ambassador to Ukraine testifying behind closed doors that she felt threatened by the President of the United States. It's all in a trove of documents released by the House Intelligence Committee today.
According to the transcript of former Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch's testimony, she was asked about what President Trump meant when he told the President of Ukraine that she was 'going to go through some things'. "I don't know what it meant," she told congressional investigators. "I was very concerned. I still am." "Did you feel threatened?" She was asked. "Yes," she response.
This is just part of what we're learning tonight from the just released transcripts of witness testimony in the House Intelligence Committee. Ambassador Yovanovitch telling lawmakers that Rudy Giuliani's plan to dig up dirt on Trump's potential rivals dates back to almost a year ago. That is when Yovanovitch claim she was told by a Ukrainian that Giuliani had plans and that they were going to do things, including to me.
Do things? Was the United States Ambassador to Ukraine threatened by Trump's personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani? The transcript continues, question to Yovanovitch, "Did you ever have any conversations after November, December 2018, with Ukrainian officials about Mr. Giuliani up until the time that you left in May?"
Yovanovitch replied, "I think perhaps in the February time period, I did where one of the senior Ukrainian officials was very concerned, and told me I really needed to watch my back." Watch my back? Well, the President today was asked if he was targeting his then Ambassador.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Was Marie Yovanovitch the target of a smear campaign by Your allies?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I really don't know her.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She testified she was.
TRUMP: But if you look at the transcripts, the President of Ukraine was not a fan of hers.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Trump says he didn't know her. But that gives a completely false impression of his involvement. I mean, that's just the bottom line. There's no other way to say it. He knew plenty about her and he didn't like her.
And at that same time when she was told to watch her back, Trump's closest allies, the people who are talking to him all the time were launching an all out public assault on Yovanovitch from Fox News.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE DIGENOVA, FOX NEWS COMMENTATOR: Marie Yovanovitch has bad-mouthed the President of the United States to Ukrainian officials and has told them not to listen or worry about Trump policy because he's going to be impeached.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Yovanovitch saying it got so bad that she approached Trump's major donor and handpicked Ambassador of the EU Gordon Sondland for advice and he told her, again, her words, this is straight from the transcripts. "He said, you know, you need to go big or go home. You need to, you know, tweet out there that you support the President."
In other words do what Trump says and tell the world that he's great. Now, Yovanovitch would not do that and Trump did get rid of her. Pamela Brown is traveling with the President tonight out front live in Lexington, Kentucky. Pam, how is the White House responding to the release of the transcripts? The ones that we have thus far.
PAMELA BROWN, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, so far, Erin, the White House is downplaying it, dismissing it saying what has come out a lot of it is already known, no big deal. But we did learn a lot through this transcript that were released today as you pointed out, where the former Ukrainian Ambassador have felt threatened by what the President said on that call with Zelensky that she was bad news.
But the President today repeating talking points he had said previously that it was President Zelensky of Ukraine who has expressed concerns about her, the President trying to distance himself saying he didn't really know her. Of course, during that call it was the President who brought her up saying she was bad news, prompting Zelensky to agree with her.
But the White House expected the transcript released today and bracing for more to come, potentially more damning testimony to come that would only corroborate the whistleblower's testimony and the effort by Rudy Giuliani in that shadow foreign policy campaign that was going on. This transcript released today, Erin, also comes when four White House officials stonewalled and did not show up for their testimony despite subpoenas.
That is a theme you're going to see played out this week because we do expect two OMB officials, two top officials at OMB who were intricately involved in holding up the Ukraine aid to not show up for their testimony tomorrow either.
Of course, for the President, for the White House, this is welcome because previously there have been some damning testimony from current and former administration officials to the fact that you're now seeing White House officials stonewalling is something is part of this White House strategy to not cooperate. The big sticky point they keep pointing to is that administration officials can't be in during this testimony.
Now, all of this is happening, Erin, as the President appears to be changing this tune on quid pro quo, saying it's no big deal if that did happen. We'll have to wait to see what he says here during the rally in Kentucky, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Pam. And out front now, Democratic Congressman Denny Heck who sits on the House Intelligence Committee. Congressman, I appreciate your time.
So Yovanovitch said when she was recalled, removed from her job, she was told, "This is about your security. You need to come home immediately." Get on a plane, she was asked, does that mean her physical security? She was told, I don't get that impression, but you need to come home immediately. What sort of security do you think they meant?
REP. DENNY HECK (D-WA): Well, one is only left a conjecture to determine that, Erin. I think it was Carol Perez that told her that. And obviously, Ambassador Yovanovitch felt threatened and felt physically unsafe and who wouldn't, especially when you read what the President said in the phone call later that she would be going through some things. That's obviously as it were a pale form of witness intimidation.
It's not surprising, however, this is the same guy who's probably engaged in the parallel of jury tampering by upping very considerably his financial support of key Republican U.S. senators who are running for reelection. He's trying to taint the jury pool as it were in the event that articles of impeachment are voted out of Committee and out of the House.
BURNETT: So now that the transcript is out there for Public to read, do you want Yovanovitch to testify publicly as well now that we've seen - I mean, it was many hours that she was behind closed doors with you and your Republican colleagues. We've all been able to read it. Do you want her publicly to?
HECK: Personally, I would. But frankly, I don't think that's a decision that should be made until we've had an opportunity to see just what exactly is the entire pool of people that have been able to be deposed is determined and we don't know that yet. But I think she'd be a prime candidate, but there will be others as well and that decision will be made, again, after we've had an opportunity to look over all those that have come forward thus far and see who it is that actually has the most materially significant content to offer.
BURNETT: Right. And in some of these cases, obviously, we know a lot. I mean we know it was in the opening statements. We don't know the full back and forth questioning and I know that your chairman, Chairman Schiff, says or House Intelligence Committee Chairman Schiff says the transcript of the Ukraine former special envoy Kurt Volker, and the U.S. Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland that that was going to be released tomorrow.
Do you think when people get a chance to see those full transcripts, and again, we're talking with Volker, it was eight, nine hours if I recall correctly. But do you think that releasing those transcripts is going to change anyone's mind?
HECK: Well, I hope so because the fact of the matter is that in almost every material instance, every person who has come forward has corroborated what the others have said. So there's a pretty high definition picture that has been brought into focus by all of these.
Frankly, Erin, I've been sitting here thinking it must be completely exhausting to be President Trump to stand up and have to answer the questions about the content of this witness testimony and basically to mislead the American public so clearly in each and every regard. And I look ahead at all of the other witness testimony that will be revealed, Dr. Hill, Ambassador Taylor and I could go on and on.
This guy is going to be completely exhausted when this is over with. It would be so much simpler for him if you were just to acknowledge the clear truth of the fact.
BURNETT: So look you said you need to know your witness pool before you know who could testify publicly. Obviously, one key witness could be John Bolton and we don't know whether he'll testify or not. NBC News says Bolton will be willing to testify if the court orders his longtime deputy Charles Kupperman to testify.
And, of course, Kupperman is fighting it, filing a lawsuit to determine whether he has to testify. And it's possible, it looks like now we may not get an answer on that from the courts until January. So will you move forward with a full vote on articles of impeachment without testimony from people like John Bolton who really was obviously at the core here of every other testimony we've gotten thus far?
HECK: Well, that remains to be seen, Erin. But I'll tell you what we're not going to do. We're not going to play rope-a-dope with the administration in their continuing effort to withhold all of the documentation that we have subpoenaed and to instruct administration employees not to come before us. That's obstruction of Congress.
That to me is a tacit acknowledgement of guilt and will be included in any deliberation about whatever report we may submit to the Judiciary Committee when they get to the point of drafting articles of impeachment. But just, again, as we've reminded the American public so many times of, obstruction of Congress and abuse of power were articles of impeachment in the time before last that we went through this, so that was with President Nixon.
BURNETT: So obviously, Judiciary Committee, as you point out would draft those former articles, but the initial public hearings will be conducted by your committee, the Intelligence Committee. That's where we're all going to see them.
CBS is reporting tonight Republicans are thinking about moving an outspoken defender of the President, his close ally, Congressman Jim Jordan, temporarily to your committee so that he would be there to question. What do you make of that?
HECK: Of them transferring Jim Jordan to the Intelligence Committee temporarily so that he can be the lead?
BURNETT: Yes, so that also that he could ask questions.
HECK: Right. Sounds like a great big fat vote of no confidence in Devin Nunes to me. That's the only other way I can interpret that since Devin Nunes has been the ranking member of this last year and was chairman previous to that. Truth of the matter is and we don't like to reveal too much about who comes in who goes in those close sessions, but I'll say this for Jim Jordan, at least he's been present.
BURNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much. Are you contrasting that to Devin Nunes, specifically?
HECK: I'll leave that to you and the viewers to interpret, Erin.
BURNETT: OK. All right. I appreciate your time as always. Congressman Heck, thank you.
HECK: THANK YOU.
BURNETT: And next, Mike Pompeo's former advisor says he pushed the Secretary of State to issue a statement in support of Ambassador Yovanovitch. So why did Pompeo suggest something different? Plus, Trump and his allies want to out the whistleblower and are saying something untrue about that person in the process. Plus, top Democratic Congressman Jim Clyburn says Pete Buttigieg's sexuality is an issue for some African-American voters. Why?
BURNETT: Breaking news, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's former senior advisor tried and failed on multiple occasions to get him to show support for then U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch as team Trump was trying to undermine her. Michael McKinley testifying during his impeachment deposition that he told Pompeo, "Wouldn't it be good to put out a statement on Yovanovitch? Since my impression is the Department, at least tried to keep her in Ukraine."
When asked what was his response about Pompeo, McKinley responded, "He listened. That was it. Sort of, 'Thank you.' That was the limit of the conversation." Well, the issue according to McKinley came up two other times including when McKinley went and spoke to Pompeo to resign from his post.
McKinley testified that he, again, brought up the State Department publicly backing Yovanovitch, "I was pretty direct. I said, you know, this situation isn't acceptable." So those are very direct, this is what he's testifying under oath to. This is why what Pompeo said when he asked about whether McKinley approached him about publicly backing Yovanovitch sounds so strange.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE POMPEO, SECRETARY OF STATE: From the time that Ambassador Yovanovitch departed Ukraine until the time that he came to tell me that he was departing, I never heard him say a single thing about his concerns with respect to the decisions made.
GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, ABC NEWS CHIEF ANCHOR: So you were never asked to put out a ...
POMPEO: Not once, George, did Ambassador McKinley say something to me during that entire time period.
STEPHANOPOULOS: You were never asked to put out a statement in support of Ambassador Yovanovitch.
POMPEO: George, again, I'm not going to talk about private conversations that I had with my most trusted advisors.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Out front now, Chief Investigative Correspondent for Yahoo News, Michael Isikoff, Sophia Nelson, who was the GOP Counsel for the House Oversight Committee during Clinton impeachment and former Assistant Director for the FBI Greg Brower and former Republican State Senator in Nevada.
Michael, OK, you see McKinley's testimony and then Pompeo is specifying a certain date, a certain period during which he says that this conversation did not occur and then when George Stephanopoulos says, "Well, did it ever occur?" He says, "Well, I don't want to talk about my conversations."
Was Pompeo being less than forthcoming in that interview by trying to be so specific about the date and not answer the actual question?
MICHAEL ISIKOFF, CHIEF INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT, YAHOO NEWS: Well, you can't get a sharper contradiction between what Ambassador McKinley testified under oath and what Secretary Pompeo was saying on TV to George Stephanopoulos. I think this is going to make it pretty difficult for Pompeo to avoid saying more including if not testifying before the House Committee, it's pretty clear that no senior administration officials are going to do that.
But it's also pretty clear President Trump is going to be impeached and there will be a trial in the Senate. What happens if Secretary Pompeo is called to testify as a witness in that trial after Ambassador McKinley gives his testimony about three times going to the Secretary, telling him the situation was unacceptable, the treatment of Ambassador Yovanovitch was out of bounds and Pompeo saying nothing.
I think that's going to make it really interesting and particularly there's going to be some tough decisions that Pompeo and Chief Justice Roberts who will preside over this trial are going to are going to be making.
BURNETT: So, look, this is far from the first time that Pompeo has dodge questions on Ukraine or given these answers that are very specific but non-direct and completely avoid the point. Here he is being asked what he did with the cable that bill Taylor, who was the top American diplomat to Ukraine testified that he said to Pompeo, right?
Bill Taylor said I was in Kiev, John Bolton said, "You know what, send a cable to Pompeo with all of your concerns about the aid to Ukraine being held up." And Taylor testifies that he did it and he gives it to Pompeo and then Pompeo was asked about it and here's what he says.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What did you do with that cable?
POMPEO: Yes, I'm not going to talk about the inquiry this morning.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So did you relay his concerns to the President?
POMPEO: Look, I came here today to talk about workforce development. I came here today to talk about the great things that are going on here in Kansas.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Greg, why do you think Pompeo is acting like this and not sharing what he knows?
GREG BROWER, FORMER FBI ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Well, Erin, I think either the Secretary was not in the loop on this, what you might call unholy effort to shake down the Ukrainians or he was in the loop and obviously can't disclose that because either scenario is a bad one for him. And so it's hard to tell exactly what he knows. He may have been out of the loop on this, but either way it's not a good look for the Secretary.
BURNETT: Sophia, now we're starting to get these transcripts, we got a couple today, we're going to get more tomorrow. And by the way, you have more stonewalling from the administration, so we may never hear from John Bolton before an impeachment vote or all of this is going to get pushed well into next year. Does it lessen the impact if these witnesses are called back for these public hearings when we've already seen the transcripts, the opening statements and all of this information is out there.
SOPHIA NELSON, FORMER HOUSE GOP OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE COUNSEL DURING CLINTON IMPEACHMENT: Not at all. I think it actually heightens the awareness of the public. I mean, think about what happened, Erin, in the lead up to the Mueller report. We knew what it said. We had the summaries, but when Bob Mueller finally testified, we all were riveted in looking at our television sets and we didn't want to move.
I think that you have a similar effect here. I think Yovanovitch would be an interesting and compelling witness to hear from as would be McKinley. I mean, but I agree with Michael and your other guest that this is a really difficult situation for the administration and the Secretary of State, in particular.
They keep digging in deeper and deeper. Somebody is lying here. Let's just put that on the table, somebody is lying and I'd like to believe the guy that's under oath, under penalty of perjury who left of his own free volition and left the State Department probably isn't the one lying. So I think that creates a problem and I think that what Congress is trying to do, Erin, the three Committees; Judiciary, government form an Oversight and Intel (ph) 1920 [00:02:24] are working together to release this information in the interim where as you know the witnesses that they're trying to call and compel will not come up to the Hill, which is to me obstruction of Congress and ought to be dealt with immediately. They ought to send somebody after those folks that are not coming and testifying.
BURNETT: So when you look at the perspective of what was going on with all of this though, Michael, when Yovanovitch was asked about her conversations with Ukrainian officials about Giuliani, she recalls a conversation with one official who was very concerned about Giuliani's efforts, along with his associates. He was working right with these guys who now have been arrested and she testifies, Michael, "He basically said, and went into some detail, that there two individuals from Florida, Mr. Parnas and Mr. Fruman, who were working with Mayor Giuliani, and that they had set up the meetings for Mr. Giuliani, and that they were interested in having a different ambassador at post, I guess, because they wanted to have business dealings in Ukraine, or additional business dealings."
Michael, it does open up the question of whether - what's your take on this? This is Rudy Giuliani all trying to make a lot of money and he dangles the Joe Biden investigation in front of Trump, who gets fully onboard, but this is Rudy Giuliani's deal.
ISIKOFF: Yes. I mean, look, here you have the ambassador, career diplomat trying to do her job, serving American National Security interests in Ukraine and learning that she's being undercut by the President's personal lawyer dealing with these business guys who are working for a business deal, and essentially undercutting everything she's doing as the ambassador. It was an untenable situation that she was in.
She's also - hears from one of the senior Ukrainian officials telling her she has to watch her back because Giuliani was going to that senior Ukrainian official, bad mouthing the ambassador. I mean, Ambassador McKinley said in his testimony that he had never seen anything like this in 37 years of service. I think that's a pretty striking point.
BURNETT: All of you stay with me, because the other thing going on right now and unprecedented is Trump's push to out the whistleblower.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I think that the whistleblower gave a lot of false information and you have to see who the whistleblower is.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Plus, you're screwing around with a wrong guy, that's a quote from a billionaire investor in a battle with Elizabeth Warren. Why?
BURNETT: Breaking news, President Trump ignoring a top Republican by continuing to demand the identity of the Ukraine whistleblower.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: I think that the whistleblower gave a lot of false information and you have to see who the whistleblower is. And the whistleblower seems to have disappeared.
(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: So he keep saying this and then his comments coming just
hours after Senator Chuck Grassley, the Chairman of the Senate Whistleblower Protection Caucus, a very influential longtime Republican obviously in the senate told CNN, "The law protects the whistleblower. I want maximum protection for whistleblowers."
Everyone is back with me.
I mean, Greg, look. Trump is not letting up with his demand to out the whistle-blower, reveal the person's identity. Do you think he is going to end up getting what he wants?
GREG BROWER, FORMER FBI ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF CONGRESSIONAL AFFAIRS: I'm not sure if he will or not. But I would submit that he is completely wrong about all of this. There is no evidence whatsoever that the whistle-blower has given any kind of false evidence or has been wrong about what has been reported. In fact, the evidence suggests that virtually everything the whistle-blower initially reported has been corroborated.
And at this point, the identity of the whistle-blower is entirely irrelevant. And so, getting testimony from the whistle-blower just will add nothing to this investigation.
BROWER: It's just, again, the president's way of attacking those who are on the other side of him, whether it's FBI agents, prosecutors, special counsels, and now the whistle-blower.
BURNETT: So I want to get to the facts of the whistle-blower in a moment because you raise a really important point. Sophia, first though, what does it say? I mean, I'm talking about Chuck Grassley, right? I mean, a very senior, decades-long, right, member of the Senate. Senior Republican making it clear that what Trump is doing is not acceptable and not OK, and finally speaking out today.
What is that? What does that mean?
SOPHIA NELSON, FORMER HOUSE GOP OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE COUNSEL DURING CLINTON IMPEACHMENT: Well, Chuck Grassley was chair of the Senate judiciary committee for a very long time. Of course, he's going to uphold the Whistle-blower Act of 1989.
This is inappropriate. It is intimidation. The only reason the president wants this person's name leaked and their identity outed is so he can intimidate and harass them on twitter with a name attached.
More importantly, let me be clear, Congress dating back to 1777, the Continental Congress passed whistle-blower protections dealing with the Navy case where a commander had done something wrong. Someone told it. And the attorney's fees were paid. Congress honored this dating back to our founding. That's how important whistle-blower protections are. No this person
should not be outed ever, ever, ever, and the president is out of control and out of order. This is illegal. He is harassing this person.
BURNETT: So, Michael, on that front, you know, the president saying, look, the identity needs to be out there of this person. This person does not deserve to be protected. He has done it again and again. I referenced it but I want everyone to understand why I am saying that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The whistle-blower should be revealed because the whistle-blower gave false information.
Do we have to protect somebody that gave a totally false account of my conversation? I don't know. You tell me.
The whistle-blower got it all wrong. Who's the whistle-blower? Who's the whistle-blower? Who is the whistle-blower? We have to know.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And then he said, is the whistle-blower a spy? In a moment, I'm going to tackle the facts because as Greg said, the facts here with the whistle-blower said is true.
But, Michael, do you think that this could be part of impeachment articles against President Trump? And in that vein, what do you read into Senator Grassley, senior Republican, standing up to the president on this issue?
MICHAEL ISIKOFF, CHIEF INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT, YAHOO NEWS: Well, look, it is significant to have any Senate Republican standing up to the president, so, you know, I think that's something worth watching. Whether that's going to tell us anything more about where Grassley comes down I don't know.
You know, there is a clear flavor of witness intimidation there in the way the president is talking about it. And his arguments would be a lot stronger if, in fact, the whistle-blower had gotten something wrong. But from all we can see, he hadn't.
That said, I will not be surprised if during the public hearings or during the trial one of the president's defenders just drops the name of the whistle-blower. That seems almost inevitable to me.
And I think at the end of the day when this is over, I think we probably will know the whistle-blower's name when this history gets written of this, he did play an important role and people will want to know who that person is.
BURNETT: You know, Greg, when the whistle-blower got it all wrong, obviously, the whistle-blower didn't. Trump asked Ukraine's president to investigate the Bidens, true. Work with Guiliani to do so, true. And, of course, Trump's own hand picked inspector general thought this was urgent and credible.
So, none of this whistle-blower is false adds up but the whistle- blower's attorneys have said they'll answer written questions. And, Greg, the president of the United States says this is just unacceptable. Written answers not acceptable he tweeted. He must be brought forward to testify. That is Trump's tweet today.
Yet in the Mueller report, we see the president, what, say 15 to 20 times he doesn't recall all in written responses. So, it is fine for him but not fine for the whistle-blower.
BROWER: Yes, there he goes again. But, again, I would submit that the whistle-blower at this point is entirely irrelevant.
This would be like -- if I could draw an analogy, if I had a neighbor who I knew to be a convicted felon and yet I witnessed that this neighbor had stored in his garage a stockpile of firearms and I called the police and gave an anonymous tip about that fact, and then the police came out and investigated and found that this convicted felon did in fact have a stockpile of firearms, the fact that I was the initial tipster would be completely irrelevant because the police upon their investigation did find this convicted felon in possession of the firearms.
It's no different here. Because what the whistle-blower reported has essentially been corroborated in every meaningful way --
BROWER: -- who he is and what he said initially and how he said it is irrelevant.
BURNETT: As you are all nodding. Very well said there, Greg.
Thank you all very much. I appreciate your time tonight.
NELSON: Thank you.
BURNETT: And next, half of Americans want the president to be impeached. The other half don't. What do voters in this swing district say?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's horrible. Just horrible what they're doing.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The president is doing a great job.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: What they think matters.
Plus, Elizabeth Warren takes on Wall Street. And now, Wall Street is fighting back in a big way.
BURNETT: Tonight, President Trump railing against the impeachment process, tweeting: All-time high for stock market and all the fake news wants to talk about is the impeachment hoax.
The big question is whether that message will work, with swing voters.
Jason Carroll is OUTFRONT.
JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Picturesque small towns, affluent suburbs, and overwhelmingly white. Michigan's 11th is a congressional district carved out of an area just northwest of Detroit.
TRUMP: Who won the state of Michigan after decades?
CARROLL: It's also a district that voted for Trump in 2016, then flipped and elected a Democratic congresswoman, Haley Stevens, in last year's midterms.
It's a swing district in a swing state, so no surprise voters split on the impeachment inquiry.
SUSAN KERRIGAN, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I think it's a sham. OK? I think the president --
RITA DUNNING, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Horrible.
CARROLL (on camera): Horrible?
DUNNING: It's horrible. Just horrible what they're doing.
KERRIGAN: The president is doing a great job.
CARROLL (voice-over): In Plymouth, Michigan, Rita Dunning, a former auto worker, proudly shows her support for Trump on her ford pickup truck.
DUNNING: Women in Michigan love President Trump, end of story.
CARROLL (on camera): I saw your truck, I saw your truck.
DUNNING: Yes. Women keep -- quit saying women are not for Trump.
CARROLL (voice-over): Tell that to Amy Neale, a marketing director who says the inquiry is long overdue.
AMY NEALE, SUPPORTS INQUIRY: I think it's heading in the right direction finally, the impeachment. I think we're getting the evidence we need and I, you know, I hope he gets what's coming to him. CARROLL: UPS worker Steven Place says it's the Democrats who deserve
to have what is coming to them. He says for undermining a president who has done so well on the economy.
STEVEN PLACE, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Look at the real estate. The house goes on the market it's gone in a week. I mean, the economy is booming.
CARROLL: Since Trump's election the state's unemployment rate has dropped nearly one point. It should be noted he narrowly won Michigan in 2016 by just over 10,000 votes, after Obama won it twice.
CHRISTINE WILLIAMS, SUPPORTS INQUIRY: He needs to face consequences for his actions.
CARROLL: Christine Williams is a small business owner who supports the inquiry. She says it is about more than just the bottom line.
WILLIAMS: I think it's important that the inquiry be going on. I also think it is important that we not be distracted by it and that there's actually governance going on as well, too.
CARROLL: About 30 miles northeast of Plymouth in the upscale suburb of Birmingham, former marine Paul Kane also supports the inquiry.
PAUL KANE, SUPPORTS INQUIRY: I wont define myself as left or right win. I'm more middle-of-the-road.
CARROLL: Kane says he is upset over how the president and his allies have criticized decorated war veteran and White House official, Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman.
KANE: That was just totally uncalled for.
CARROLL: James Melstrom, a financial adviser, could not disagree more.
JAMES MELSTROM, TRUMP SUPPORTER: I think that the Democrats are really just trying to overturn the results from 2016 and I think it is going to fail miserably.
CARROLL: Melstrom also says his newly elected Democratic Congresswoman Haley Stevens will pay a political price for supporting the inquiry.
So much division. But that doesn't mean those who may disagree cannot be friends.
(on camera): All of you 50, you've been friends some of you since grade school. All of you 50. You can all talk politics.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. Absolutely. Even after we have a couple drinks.
CARROLL: This group celebrating their life long friendship and their differences. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think as a country we've forgotten that we're
all the same on some level. Political divisiveness isn't what is going to further this country. We have to act on a common ground.
CARROLL: So, the people that we found, Erin, pretty much evenly split. Here is one area where both sides can agree and that's everyone that we talked to seems to have a difficult time understanding how the whole impeachment process works, how long it will take. And then at the end of the day whatever the result is, if the country will end up being even more divided -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Jason.
And, obviously, with all that confusion shared by many even in Washington on the timing.
And a programming note: I'll be hosting a CNN presidential town hall with Joe Biden next Monday at 9:00 Eastern. I hope you'll join us then.
Next, Congressman Jim Clyburn speaks to CNN about Pete Buttigieg's sexuality.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Are you saying for older African-Americans it is an issue?
REP. JIM CLYBURN (D-SC): Yes, it is. No question about that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Plus, Jeanne Moos on Trump's covfefe. How it turned out to be quite the money maker.
BURNETT: Tonight, screwing around with the wrong guy. That is a quote billionaire investor Leon Cooperman's message to Elizabeth Warren. The two have been fighting it out over her plans to tax the richest in this country.
Here is Cooperman's latest shot at Warren.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEON COOPERMAN, AMERICAN BILLIONAIRE: The idea of vilifying wealthy people is so bogus, you know? They're appealing to the masses. Every billionaire I know made their billions by providing a productive, useful service or product. Then they take that money and they give it back to society.
Warren and Sanders are basically trying to make boogiemen out of wealthy people. I just -- it is counterproductive. It's wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: OUTFRONT now, 2020 presidential candidate, Senator Cory Booker.
So, Senator, look, this is a -- you represent New Jersey. A lot of tax revenue in that state obviously comes from people who work on Wall Street, people like Leon Cooperman. Are Warren and Sanders making boogie men vilifying the wealthy as he describes it and is that wrong?
SEN. CORY BOOKER (D-NJ), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Look, I ran a city that was -- during the recession, it was in a massive crisis and we had to figure out a way to solve our budget woes but also grow out of the problem.
So, we had to do things very business minded. How do I start more entrepreneurs here? How do I attract businesses to my city? But also how do I meet urgent needs?
I was finding that balance. There's no --
BURNETT: And you've worked with people like Mark Zuckerberg, Oprah Winfrey --
BOOKER: I worked with people --
BURNETT: You've worked with -- they're both billionaires.
BOOKER: I worked with Leon Cooperman.
BURNETT: Right, right.
BOOKER: So, this is my point. We are in a nation that has a tax system that does not reflect our values.
Things like carried interest are just wrong. And I have different ways of going about it than Elizabeth Warren which I think are much better and proven. But I will find a way to make sure that we have just taxes.
But this is something I also believe -- if you and I were in my neighborhood doing this interview, and I walked around and took you to black entrepreneurs, mostly women that we got started in business, they'll tell you, I want to be a millionaire. And so, we need to be the party that has just taxation, but also grows the pie and has a vision for people who want to be entrepreneurs because this is the scary thing. New business starts in our country are going down. We're seeing these massive corporations create environments where we can't start entrepreneurialism.
I want the Democratic Party -- if I'm the leader, we're going to be the leader of entrepreneurialism, the party of small business growth. We're going to give pathways especially to the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs, Black and Latino women.
BURNETT: So, it's like when Joe Biden had at one point just because you're really rich, you're not unpatriotic. You would agree with that, right?
BURNETT: You're not a bad person. Leon Cooperman or somebody else, it's not about your money. It's about your person (ph).
BOOKER: Right, I will never vilify entire categories of people. That's wrong. I'm not going to do it. But will I look you in the face and say your carried interest, your top tax rate, the facts that your capital gains is taxed at a lower rate than people who go out and sweat for your work every day, that's -- those things are wrong. Social Security tax is regressive.
There are things we have to do to create a fair taxation system to begin to invest in infrastructure, education, research, all the things that grow the economy for everybody.
BURNETT: All right. So --
BOOKER: But I also want more millionaires in America.
BURNETT: So, your message, right, is obviously very different than Warren or Sanders and what we hear. We look at Iowa right now -- Warren, Sanders and Biden, which is obviously a very different political world view --
BURNETT: -- are polling at the top, double digits. You're at 2 percent. But a recent poll shows two-thirds of people who say they're going to vote in the Iowa caucuses, that two-thirds of them could be persuaded to switch their vote.
BURNETT: OK? So, what are you doing to get them --
BOOKER: Well, number one, I lead this like three or four of us that are at the top in terms of most liked candidates. I'm in that category.
BOOKER: I'm -- me and Elizabeth Warren are the most endorsed candidates from local leaders.
BOOKER: Every local media there says the two best political organizations on the ground are me and Elizabeth Warren. And you and I both know the polls that they put up had been wrong. Kerry polled at 4 percent, won Iowa. Barack Obama on this day in 2007 was 21 points behind Hillary Clinton.
This is still a wide open race. My team, we're determined to win on the ground.
BOOKER: We have to hire more organizers because Elizabeth is hiring up faster than we are now. That's why we're pleading with people these days, go -- if you believe in me, go to corybooker.com. Help us qualify for the December debates and hire more organizers.
This is a wide open race, and now is the time. I hear people saying all the time, this is the most important election of our lifetime. Well, act on it, act like it, give -- invest in the candidate you believe in.
BURNETT: So, you know, obviously there is this immense focus on the African-American vote, right? And there is this belief that the last time around, if you had had better turnout and a few important places in this country, this election, that election would have turned out very differently than it did.
One of your rivals is South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Congressman Jim Clyburn of South Carolina this weekend talked about Buttigieg's sexual orientation and whether it is hurting him with older black voters, right? He's really been trying to court the black vote.
I want to play the full exchange for you, Senator.
BOOKER: Yes, I've not heard t.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLYBURN: Well, that's a generational issue. I know of a lot of people my age who feel that way.
BASH: Are you saying for older African Americans, it is an issue?
CLYBURN: Yes, it is. There's no question about that. I'm not going to sit here and tell you otherwise because I think everybody knows that's an issue.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: What's your response?
BOOKER: Well, my parents told me when I was young, I'm here because of James Baldwin. I'm here because of Bayard Rustin. These are great black men, gay activist -- gay leaders, and they fought for my rights.
And I just believe very strongly that I celebrate the fact that we have an openly gay man in this race and it's something that's exciting to me.
But I will tell you this. I don't care if it's Pete or other people in this race. We all have to understand that we lost Wisconsin by 7,000 votes, 70,000 less African Americans came out to vote in Wisconsin in '16 that voted in '12.
And of all the people, whose record is best, when Chris Christie put my election, you remember this for Senate, he put it on a Wednesday in October as opposed to on the same day, black vote was 13 plus percent.
On the normal New Jersey elections, when there's campaigns up and down the ticket, around 9 percent. My ability to motivate and excite and ignite the outpouring of African-American voters, which is critical for us winning, I know I can do that the best in this field.
BURNETT: So -- and, look, I knew in a sense that's how you'd answer the question, right, because it's about you. But I am curious. Do you think that older African-American voters have the issue that Mr. Clyburn said they have that they're not comfortable voting for someone who is gay?
BOOKER: My mom is turning 80 this year. And she's already told me that she celebrates the fact that there is a gay person in this race, openly who he is, confident and strong. So, again, this broad brush as we paint with any demographic in our country is just wrong.
Pete is an extraordinary leader. I'm thrilled that he's in this race. When it comes to black voters and other constituencies, I think I'm going to be the better person to get folks out, but God bless America. It's wonderful we have so many wonderful people in this race, diversity.
BURNETT: All right. Senator Booker, thank you so much. I appreciate your time. And good to see you in person. It's usually out in the trail.
BOOKER: I always appreciate (ph) you. Thank you.
BURNETT: All right. And next, Jeanne Moos on how covfefe turned into someone's million dollar lucky charm.
BOOKER: Oh my gosh.
BURNETT: Here's Jeanne.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): She's a 3-year- old Philly who thundered down the back stretch, taking us all back in time.
TRUMP: I hear covfefe.
MOOS: The race horse's name Covfefe after President Trump's most famous missed tweet, and though there was no confetti for Covfefe, her win at the breeders cup had her owners over the moon.
MOOS: There's the glory and the $1 million prize.
Co-owner Jaime Roth told "USA Today" they named her covfefe because we thought she was special and we thought the name was kind of funny.
JAMIE ROTH, CO-OWNER: Oh, covfefe!
I love her so much.
MOOS: Even if Jaime's co-owner mom pronounces it differently.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Covfefe.
MOOS: President Trump himself tweeted that the horse's victory was great, but how do you know it was a mistweet? Maybe something with deep meaning?
(on camera): And they're off. Not the horses, the tweets.
(voice-over): Pro and anti-Trump, it was a horse with the name Covfefe that won the breeders cup. But it was the horses ass that tweeted it.
Trump supporters, on the other hand, were reminded of his pledge.
TRUMP: You are going to get so sick and tired of winning.
MOOS: Even his typos turn into winners.
TRUMP: We're going to win, win, win.
MOOS: Covfefe has won six of her eight races.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Covfefe sails by the pole.
MOOS: You'd think it was an actual word rather than a bunch of letters typed in an after midnight presidential tweet the way it rolls off the tongue.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And Covfefe has trumped the competition. She ran huge.
MOOS: Covfefe's owners said she didn't vote for president Trump, telling "USA Today", he just doesn't stand for the things that I believe in. But I believe in Covfefe.
What we all want to see is Covfefe horse invited to the White House. Kudos to Covfefe. Maybe she's the one who is a stable genius.
TRUMP: I'm a very stable genius.
MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
BURNETT: And thanks for joining us.
Anderson starts now.