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Public Impeachment Hearings Begin Wednesday on Capitol Hill; Republicans Want Hunter Biden and Whistleblower to Testify; NYT: Anonymous "A Warning" Author Makes Case Against Re-Election; President Trump Again Pushes for the Whistleblower to Testify; Sanders on Bloomberg: People are Tired of Billionaires; Brushfires Forces the Evacuation of Warner Bros. Studios. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired November 10, 2019 - 07:00   ET





UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are just days away now from the start of public impeachment hearings.

REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): Those open hearings will be an opportunity for the American people to learn firsthand about the facts of the president's misconduct.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: There's never been a president who is so transparent. This is a witch hunt at the highest level.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The question is, did president of the United States violate the Constitution and did he profit from his office?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The president was at the Alabama/Louisiana game in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, today.

Here is how he was received. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you vote for Trump in 2016?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely, and I'll vote for him again even if I've got to go in a wheelchair.


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: It's 7:00 on a Sunday morning, 7:01, in fact. There's still weekend time left. I think it was good.


PAUL: Yes, don't panic. Good morning to you. I'm Christi Paul.

SAVIDGE: And I'm Martin Savidge, in for Victor Blackwell. Great to be with you.

Well, this week is set to be the most crucial to date in the impeachment inquiry. The first public televised hearing start Wednesday.

PAUL: Three key witnesses are already scheduled to appear, Bill Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat in Ukraine, George Kent, a senior U.S. diplomat, and Marie Yovanovitch the former ambassador to Ukraine.

SAVIDGE: Republicans have released the names of the witnesses they want to call to testify. Among them, Hunter Biden and the anonymous whistleblower who started the whole impeachment inquiry.

PAUL: So, we want to bring in CNN correspondent Kristen Holmes in Washington.

I'm wondering, first of all, what people are reading into the Republican Party strategy as we look into the witness list that they have submitted.


Well, there is a lot to be looked into when they take a look at this witness list there. And the first thing is that it shows that Republicans are going to have a clear effort to shift focus away from President Trump and his policy in Ukraine. And we start by looking at those two big names, Hunter Biden and the unanimous whistleblower. And when it comes to the anonymous whistleblower, we had already heard from their lawyer saying, that asking them to testify in front of the committee was a nonstarter, that the whistleblower would submit written answers to Republican questions but not would appear in public.

And late last night, we got a letter, CNN, obtaining a letter from the U.S. House Intel Chairman Adam Schiff which essentially solidify that. Schiff saying that there was no reason for the whistleblower to testify, that they had already heard enough that confirmed what he had originally put forward. And this letter read, in part: The whistleblower's testimony is therefore redundant and unnecessary and in light of the president's threats, the individuals appearing before us would only place their personal safety at grave risk.

Now, I want to point to one other thing here that this witness list really points out. It shows that Republicans are also going to try and steer the focus towards some of these unsubstantiated conspiracy theories.

And we take a look at that list, there's a couple I want to point out. You have a former board member of the same Ukrainian energy company that Biden was on. You have a researcher who worked for Fusion GPS, which is, of course, the firm that commissioned that famous dossier that linked President Trump and Russia. And you also have a Ukrainian who was a staffer at the Democratic

National Committee. So, clearly, they don't involve the impeachment inquiry as we know it so far, but this is their strategy.

SAVIDGE: The strategy is to deflect.

Meanwhile, Kristen, the president blocked his chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, from testifying but Trump says he wants a fair transparent process. And we are getting mixed messages from the White House.

HOLMES: We're -- absolutely, we have been hearing this mixed messages since the beginning of President Trump's tenure in office, essentially starting with the Mueller investigation, same thing, saying that he was the most transparent president because they released documents, but yet President Trump would not talk to Mueller himself. No release on those tax returns and it comes to the same exact thing with this Ukraine investigation.

Here is what he had to say yesterday.


COLLINS: You said the impeachment hearings should not be held behind closed doors but now you say you don't want them to be public?

TRUMP: No, no. I don't care. Public, they should be public. What I said -- it was misreported, as usual.

What I said is very simple. There shouldn't be anything. There shouldn't be impeachment hearings is what I said. So maybe they misconstrued it.

What I say is read the transcript.


It's all about the transcript. They are having people, I never heard of some of these people. I don't know who they are.

And, by the way, it's all third-hand knowledge. But regardless of what anyone says, read the transcript!


HOLMES: And, Christi and Martin, I cannot point this out enough. President Trump continues to say it's third-hand knowledge but we have heard from witnesses who were on that call with President Zelensky.

PAUL: All right. Kristen Holmes, we appreciate it so much. Thank you.

Now, at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow night, a judge in Washington is hearing arguments to determine if acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney can join a lawsuit that questions the subpoena power of the House. SAVIDGE: If allowed, Mulvaney wouldn't be able to testify in the

impeachment inquiry until a federal court decides the case. On Friday, Mulvaney ignored a subpoena to testify, claiming immunity.

PAUL: Mulvaney says he fears the House could hold him in contempt while he obeys that president's orders to not appear.

SAVIDGE: We are joined now by our political analyst, White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks, April Ryan, and Michael Zeldin, Robert Mueller's former special assistant to the Department of Justice and a CNN legal analyst.

Good morning to the two of you.



SAVIDGE: April, let me ask -- let me ask you this. The Republican wish list that has been put forward --

RYAN: Yes.

SAVIDGE: -- it clearly indicates that the Republicans are going to deflect here, is it a good strategy? And do you think it will work?

RYAN: Of course, it's great strategy to deflect but the Democrats are firm on this narrow focus. They want to focus in on the issue of the president and this Ukrainian call, not dealing with Hunter Biden, they don't want to deal with that. But at issue, will these Republicans bring this up when questioning begins these public hearings? That's the issue.

And they're good at deflecting changing the narrative. And that's the issue. The White House doesn't want impeachment. So, the GOP who happens to be on these panels, they are along the president, so we'll have to histrionics that will play out even as Adam Schiff says he will not allow for those witnesses to include the anonymous, the anonymous whistleblower, as well as Hunter Biden and others to come in from that GOP list.

PAUL: So, Michael, it's expected these witnesses that they have asked for, at least some of them, maybe Hunter Biden, the whistleblower, are going to be rejected. But is there a benefit to the Republicans putting their name out there?

ZELDIN: Well, it changes the substance of what the president is accused to these collateral matters. I frankly think it's shameful if the Republican defenders of the president believe that he did nothing wrong, and then they should try the merits of the case and not have these collateral witnesses and try to just stir up dirt at the bottom of the pool.

I personally think that if the president believes firmly, as he does, that he did nothing wrong and this is a perfect call, then join the issue on the merits, let the witnesses testify, let Mulvaney, let Bolton, let all of these people who have substantive direct knowledge of what went on testify. And then the American people can determine who is right.

SAVIDGE: Can I ask you real quick, Michael? The second call which is actually the first call apparently if you look at the time line, do we know anything about it and what we expect? Will there be anything significant? I mean, it was a phone call to the president of Ukraine that really got us where we are.

ZELDIN: Right. As I understand it, this was a call in April. It was more of a congratulatory call than a substantive call so I don't think there is much in there that is substantive like the July call was. We have to see. It won't be a transcript, of course. It will be a summary and hopefully, the summary will be complete where the July summary excluded information that was relevant to the matter under inquiry, the impeachable offense inquiry, so we'll see. I just don't expect there to be much here.

PAUL: April, I want to ask you about Mulvaney. Democrats essentially have one of two things to decide here. They are going to give I am him his court run and take a gamble and bank on him being ordered to testify, or they're going to abandon that thought and just try to get this through expeditiously. Which of those two options do you think is most important for them?

RYAN: I think more important to wait it out. Two names are prominent in all of this testimony that we are getting, the depositions and the transcripts we are getting is that Rudy Giuliani was one person and Mick Mulvaney was the other. Mick Mulvaney even came out at that podium saying there is quid pro quo and tried to roll it back.

The wait out and see is the best approach because Mick Mulvaney has a finger that could point to the president and others to nail this coffin shut, possibly.

PAUL: All righty.


April Ryan, Michael Zeldin, so glad that you both agreed to get up so early on a Sunday morning. Grateful to have you here.

ZELDIN: Thank you.

RYAN: Thanks, Christi.

PAUL: Thank you. Sure.

President Trump, by the way, was welcomed with cheers and chants of "USA" at the Alabama/LSU football game. First Lady Melania Trump was with him. His reception contrasted with the scene at game five of the World Series in Washington where the welcome was not quite so exuberant.

SAVIDGE: No, it was quite different. Meanwhile, not far away from that stadium, anti-Trump protesters were

proudly flying their baby Trump balloon where a random guy flashed by and slashed it. Police arrested the balloon slayer. Thirty-two-year- old Hoyt Hutchison (ph), he's been charged with first-degree criminal mischief.

PAUL: Football fans, they were asked about their thoughts about the impeachment inquiry against the president. Here is what they were saying yesterday.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's a bunch of bull (EXPLETIVE DELETED). Bottom line, I think they're fishing. It's a fishing competition and it's been like that three years now. So --

REPORTER: How much are you following what he is actually being impeached for?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Something in the Ukraine where he told the president take a look at Biden for his misdeeds, why he was in office. If he was corrupt, he was corrupt. Put him in jail.

REPORTER: Did you vote for Trump in 2016?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely and I'll vote for him again even if I have to go in there in a wheelchair.


SAVIDGE: Meanwhile, in a sharp rebuke of the Republican Party, Cindy McCain, the wife of the late Senator John McCain, said her husband would be terribly upset with Republicans in Congress.


DAVID AXELROD, CNN HOST, "THE AXE FILES": What would John McCain be saying right now?

CINDY MCCAIN, WIDOW OF SEN. JOHN MCCAIN: Oh, gosh. I think -- I think he would be disgusted with some of the stuff that's going on. I really do. I think he would be railing against what is going on and I think John provided a lot of cover for other members and when he would do it, and they could get behind him kind of thing. and I'm not seeing that, a real rudder, in the Senate right now in all of this.


PAUL: Cindy John McCain went on to say Republicans may be afraid to take on President Trump in afraid of not being reap elected but she said, quote, this is her, you have to do what you're elected to do and that is represent the country, unquote.

Coming up, an anonymous senior Trump administration official is set to release a tell-all book about what they describe as complete chaos.

Our next guest, Jennifer Szalai from "The New York Times". She's read it. We're going to talk to her about what's in it.

SAVIDGE: Plus, Bernie blasts billionaires. How Vermont senator is going after Michael Bloomberg's potential bid for the White House.

PAUL: And listen, a disturbing cell phone video, I don't know if you've seen it yet, but a teacher -- a substitute teacher punching, stomping on a student in a high school in Texas. We'll tell you what this is all about.



SAVIDGE: A White House in disarray. Some of this country's top officials in full blow panic. That's how the author of a new book "A Warning" describes the inner workings of the White House.

PAUL: Now, according to "The Washington Post", the book is due out November 19th, and it describes the president as dealing with each new political crisis, like a 12-year-old in an air traffic control tower pushing the buttons of government indiscriminately, indifferent to the planes skidding across the runway and the flights frantically diverting away from the airport, obviously, another quote there.

Jennifer Szalai is with us here to talk about the book, nonfiction book -- nonfiction book critic I should say for "The New York Times."

So, good to have you here, Jennifer. Thank you.

I know at some point in this book anonymous writes, trust me. Do you get the sense that we should -- we should trust this writer who will not reveal him or herself?

JENNIFER SZALAI, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Well, so I think this is sort of -- it cuts to the heart of the book. I know that the White House has tried to cast doubt on the actual facts described in this book that the press secretary has said it's a bunch of lies, essentially. I want to make very clear that in my review, which was quite critical of the book, I was not actually trying to cast doubt on the facts that they are described, because I think for a lot of readers, they are going to sound very plausible because it isn't very different from a lot of what we are heard in the past three years.

I mean, I think one of the issues with this book mainly is that because the author is determined to keep themselves anonymous, what ends up happening is that he or she can't get into too many specifics. And so, they end up talking about things that have been reported in the news for the past three years, like President Trump's tweets, you know, the fact -- you mentioned the air traffic control quote, which is very memorable but, at the same time, if you think about it, it's really just a different way of putting something that people have been saying for a few years now.

SAVIDGE: Right. I was actually looking or listening for in some of the excerpts of someone describing a specific event in the White House and I'm not sure I found that yet. Let me ask you this. Since you are the critic for "The New York Times", how well is this book written? How well is it constructed? What is your critique?

SZALAI: I mean, you know, the writing is very clear. I mean, the person puts together, I think, a very methodical case of the things that they have seen in the past few years in the White House. I wouldn't say that the writing is necessarily quite beautiful to my ear, but that is maybe just a matter of taste.

I mean, there is a lot of invocations of, you know, quotations from presidents like Teddy Roosevelt, Eisenhower, you know, quotes from Cicero. I mean, it's cast in those terms and then different events that are reconstructed in the book.

But, you know, my sort of take of it is that it's very clearly written, I think partly because the author wants to make the case extremely clear as to why this is a warning for the next election.

PAUL: So you write that the big tell in the book essentially was, quote, the last straw for anonymous.


It wasn't -- and that last straw wasn't the president's faux pas or may uncouth behavior, it was the way he of spoke of John McCain when Senator John McCain died.


PAUL: What -- did anything surprise you about that?

SZALAI: I mean, it was interesting to me because at that point when Senator McCain died last year, several things had already happened that I think other people might have taken as a warning that the president perhaps was not rising to the leadership opportunities in his office. And, you know, for instance, I mentioned in my review the Unite the Right protest from Charlottesville where a woman was killed by a white supremacist. You know, Trump's reaction to that which was that there is violence on many sides.

You know, another thing is the family separation policy and what anonymous says for anonymous, essentially, the last straw wasn't any of those things, it was what -- how President Trump reacted to the death of John McCain and the president, his desire to actually raise the flags above half-mast that was particularly offensively to the author.

So, to me, you know, it was sort of telling. I mean, it does suggest to me somebody who is probably an establishment Republican figure. At least that's how the persona describes himself or herself.



PAUL: Well, Jennifer Szalai, we appreciate hearing your point of view as you've read the entire book. Thank you so much.

SZALAI: Thank you so much for having me.

PAUL: Of course.

So, when we come back, the president hits out again at the whistleblower who sparked this whole impeachment inquiry, calling on that whistleblower to testify publicly. We are going to talk about how the law currently does and doesn't protect anonymous informants inside an administration.

SAVIDGE: Plus, fan frenzy. Several people are injured when a massive crowd of music lovers knock down barricades to see rapper Travis Scott.



PAUL: So, the attorney for the whistleblower is responding to house Republicans request for public testimony. He says, look, it's not going to happen.

SAVIDGE: He went on to say the offer for lawmakers to submit written questions for his client, that still stands, but he is concerned the Republicans' request is part of a larger effort to unmask the whistleblower. The attorney said that he wants to remind Congress what the role whistleblower plays in our government.

PAUL: And while Republicans and the president's, you know, push to oust the whistleblower there, there are others that are pushing back to protect his or her anonymity.

SAVIDGE: So, how does the government shield a whistleblower? Well, let's discuss that and joining us is Richard Painter, former White House ethics lawyer and professor of corporate law at the University of Minnesota.

Good morning to you, sir.


SAVIDGE: So, when it comes to protections of a whistleblower, we expect that these would be really strong. You want to protect these people because they are crucial to understanding how democracy works, especially things that aren't working. Are they strong laws?

PAINTER: Well, as written, the laws are reasonably strong, the Whistleblower Protection Act. The whistleblower has the right to anonymity, not to have his or her name disclosed to the public.

But the problem is that if Donald Trump or anyone else working for Donald Trump finds out the identity of the whistleblower, that name can be disclosed. There is nothing that can be done about it. The inspector general can't disclose it. It's not supposed to be disclosed, but there's no system in place from opposing a penalty for disclosing the whistleblower's name.

And unlike in the corporate setting, where there is substantial liability to whistleblowers, if they are retaliated against under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the Dodd-Frank Act, in the government setting, there's very limited ability of the whistleblower to bring a civil lawsuit. And this situation is particularly dangerous given the fact that Donald Trump has worked up some people around the country really quite violent and encouraged violence in his campaign, not to mention the fact that any situation involving Russia or Ukraine, they involve foreign operatives who will use violence. Many people who have crossed Vladimir Putin end up dead.

So, this is a very dangerous situation right now for the whistleblower.

PAUL: So, Richard, being that the whistleblower is on the witness list, you know, there is an argument about whether it's even necessary for the whistleblower to testify because there are, you know, President Trump's own statements and the script of the Ukraine call and text messages and other testimony that really corroborate what whistleblower said in the first place and then go beyond that.

But when they submit the witness list, don't they also have to explain their rational for that -- for the necessity of that witness? And do you see one here?

PAINTER: There's no rational at all to bring in the whistleblower. The telephone call transcript was there and the White House lawyer tried to bury the transcript in the classified information system even though there's nothing classified about that call, nothing that has to do with our national security. It just has to do with President Trump tried to use our military aid to Ukraine to get help for his political campaign to smear Joe Biden.

But bottom line is, the telephone call speaks for itself. There are many people in the government know exactly what was said on that telephone call, as well as the work leading up to that telephone call to withhold military aid from Ukraine until the dirt on Joe Biden, the investigation of Joe Biden and his son was commenced, and the plan even to announce that on CNN. I mean, there's so much information out there that goes well beyond what this whistleblower had to say.

The whistleblower just started the investigation. There is nothing that the whistleblower can add and this is just an attempt to retaliate against the whistleblower, to send a message to other whistleblowers.


We will retaliate against you if you would disclose what is going on in the Trump administration.

SAVIDGE: Right, it's a chilling effect.

Let me ask you this -- switching gears to John Bolton. I want to ask an ethical question, which is the fact that we have been anticipating that he was going to play a critical part in the impeachment inquiry, and we were wondering when and how he testified. Instead, we are told, tada, I'm going to have a book.

Are there ethic issues here when it comes to just the way this is all going down? It seems people are using these proceedings to a personal gain, including the way they are accusing the president.

PAINTER: Well, I think that Mr. Bolton should cooperate with the investigation and honor the subpoena he was receiving from the House of Representatives in the impeachment inquiry and not sit around and wait for court order requiring him to testify.

He has the choice to do what he thinks is right and he ought to honor those subpoenas and show up in front of the House. If he does that, and testifies truthfully, I'm fine with him to write a book. Go ahead and write a book about it. The more people write books about what is going on on in this administration, the more the public will know how bad things are. But he needs to show up in front of the House of Representatives first and testify truthfully.

SAVIDGE: Richard Painter, we always appreciate it. Thank you very much for joining us.

PAUL: Thank you, sir.

PAINTER: Thank you.

SAVIDGE: Former Vice President Joe Biden is defending his son after House Republicans have said they want to call Hunter to testify in the impeachment inquiry. Take a listen.


BIDEN: Number one. This is about Donald Trump. It's not about me.


PAUL: I hate to tell you this but take a look at these pictures. There's a new brush fire threatening southern California forcing the evacuation now of the Warner Brothers Studio, the other landmark that is threatened by this fire as well. We'll tell you.



PAUL: I wish you a good morning at 35 minutes past the hour here.

And former Vice President Joe Biden is reacting now to the news after House Republicans added his son Hunter to their impeach wish list. Take a look.


BIDEN: Number one, this is about Donald Trump. It's not about me. So let's focus on the problem here. The question is -- did the president of the United States violate the Constitution?


SAVIDGE: At a New Hampshire town hall that was yesterday, Biden also answering questions about Anita Hill and he mentioned that he met with Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh's accuser and that is Christine Blasey-Ford.


BIDEN: I talked to Anita Hill and we talked to length about what would we do to change the process she wasn't treated fairly under the rules of the committee, just like if you saw what happened in the last hearing how I met that witness as well, long after the fact, Blasey Ford, and she was destroyed in the hearings.


SAVIDGE: Meanwhile, 2020 candidate Senator Bernie Sanders criticizing former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, unloading the billionaire's decision to consider a 2020 bid for the White House.

PAUL: Sanders told CNN's Ryan Nobles he doesn't believe Bloomberg will be successful.


RYAN NOBLES, CNN WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: There's no doubt there are a lot of Democrats paying attention to the news, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's decision to possibly jump into this Democratic race for president.

And among those is Bernie Sanders who's already been in this race for sometime. Sanders, of course, has been critical of the role the very wealthy had had in politics in general and the idea that billionaires could just buy their way into races. He's already been critical of Tom Steyer, the other billionaire in this race.

Well, after an event here in Des Moines on Saturday, I have a chance to ask Sanders about his concerns about a Bloomberg candidacy. And this is what Sanders had to say.

SANDERS: When I talk about this country moving toward an oligarchy, we are talking about a handful of billionaires who exercise enormous power over the economic and political life of this country. Well, now, he -- if he or she decided to run for president, nobody would give a damn, but because somebody is worth $50 billion and has the capability of literally buying the media in a state like California, oh my goodness, how important, how monumental he is running for president?

Well, I happen to be old-fashioned. I believe in democracy. One person, one vote. And I really do resent the ideas that billionaires whether Bloomberg or anybody else, think they have the right -- by the way, they're going to skip Iowa, they're going to skip New Hampshire, they're going to skip South Carolina and Nevada. We have five town meetings and events just this last weekend here, but they don't have to do that.

Take out his wallet, spend a billionaire dollars in California or whatever you spent, and thinks he can buy the election. Frankly, I don't think that's where the American people are there right now. I think the American people are sick and tired of the power of billionaires. I suspect that his venture will not succeed.

NOBLES: You'll also note, the other part of this, is Sanders is very concerned about Bloomberg potentially skipping those early nominating states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and maybe even Nevada and skipping all the way to Super Tuesday and big state of California.

The reason being that there is a distinct advantage for someone with deep pockets to wait that long and bypass the early stage where the field is weeded out a bit.

Now, if Bloomberg were to do this, it would be monumental. No presidential candidate has ever been able to bypass the early states and been successful. Nonetheless, the fact that Bloomberg is in the race certainly has a lot of people asking questions about the field in general and what Democratic voters are thinking as we get closer and closer to the first votes being cast here in Iowa.

Ryan Nobles, CNN, Des Moines.


PAUL: Ryan, thank you so much.

Listen, there is disturbing video to show you out of Texas. A substitute teacher accused of attacking a student in the middle of class, the charges that are being faced now by that teacher. We will show you more of this video. It's hard to watch, though.



PAUL: Well, another brushfire broke out yesterday in California. What you're looking at there is near Warner Brothers Studios. It's the Barnum Fire. It forced the lot to be evacuated. We know that.

SAVIDGE: The fire, which is near the iconic Hollywood sign and several celebrity homes, has burned about 35 acres so far. The fire is only 15 percent contained.

And we are seeing disturbing video that led to the arrest of a substitute teacher in Texas.

PAUL: I mean this video shows the teacher approach a 16-year-old. Take a look here, a 16-year-old sophomore girl. You see her being punched in the face. The substitute continues hitting that girl, eventually dragging her to the ground, stomping on her head.

It is not clear what led up to this moment but the teacher was arrested by a school resource officer. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MICHAEL BAUER, PARENT OF LEHMANN HIGH GRADUATE: No matter what a kid says to you, I mean, shortly of them pulling a weapon on you -- I mean, I don't see any cause for that sort of reaction.


PAUL: Now, the substitute teacher is charged with aggravated assault. The student was taken to the hospital and expected to be OK.

We know at least three people were injured at a stampede at the Astroworld Festival in Houston, Texas. Take a look at this video.



SAVIDGE: Fans were climbing over barricades and rushing the entry gates even before the event started. The injured were taken to a local hospital with minor leg injuries. The headline rapper Travis Scott told fans, be safe! Rage hard!

The Houston Police Department said the event was understaffed and that the promoters didn't plan for such large crowd. Over 50,000 people were expected to attend.

PAUL: Do you wonder what it's like for the spouses of veterans who have served and who come home them with PSTD or brain injuries? Well, I talked to one woman who has cofounded an organization to make sure they are taken care of.

Stay with us.


PAUL: In this week's "Staying Well", we check out a rhythmic workout that's going to help you sweat more and stretch your brain.


JASMINE CUTLER, STUDIO MANAGER, VIBE RIDE: When the beat drops, everything you feel is the best.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Pound is a cardio jam session. It is a full body workout that is inspired by drums. The beat is going. You're drumming and keeping that rhythm.

We use our core and focusing on gluts and biceps and triceps and sticks mimic a standard drum stick and have intensity in the arms will add a little bit more in the workout.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You got to speed it up!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Pound is for any age and any stage. There is nothing like that moment when everyone is just one pound, one strike, hitting the ground, tapping the sticks and uniting through the beat.

DR. DAVID BURKE, REHABILITATION MEDICINE, EMORY UNIVERSITY: Drumming to a certain beat especially with other people in the area doing it connects a lot of the areas of the brain, the eccentric hard work, love of music, is something that has to do with language recognition, the harmonic, different tones of voices, sounds, vocalizations that we have to recognize to be able to understand our environment. So, if you connect with drumming or music to enhance other parts of the brain or the body, you're on to something.





PAUL: So, we want to wish a happy 244th birthday to the U.S. Marine Corps.

SAVIDGE: November 10, 1775 is when the U.S. Marine Corps was established. The day is celebrated with a Marine Corps, birthday ball, a formal dinner and a birthday cake, of course.

A wreath is also laid at the Marine Corps War Memorial.


GUNNERY SGT. AARON CALDERON, DRILL MASTER, MARINE BARRACKS WASHINGTON, DC: It's just in your heart, it's part of you. It's your soul, you know? And it's an amazing feeling every single day to be able to put on the same uniform that people from our past have and wear the anchor on our chest. It's just a great feeling.


PAUL: And we thank all of them for their service, all of you out there who have served.

In this week's "Human Kindness", Hearts of Patriots is an organization in Ohio, helping wives and spouses suffering from PTSD and traumatic brain injuries. It's just entered its third year and it's released a new documentary called blood strike. Take a look at this.


DENISE WELLER, CO-FOUNDER, "HEARTS OF PATRIOTS: When we began this project, we began it because my daughter had gotten to a point in their relationship where she understood that there was such a thing as a new normal, and that by learning to live that new normal and find that new normal, they could move forward through their marriage and through their relationship in a much more positive way. And so, the story begins with where they were at and ends at that point in which they had begun to move forward enough that I could see the huge change in their lives. (END VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL: That's Denise Weller, the co-founder of Hearts of Patriots. Here's what she told me when I spoke with her.


WELLER: The issue is that these veterans have a lot of problems that they can't get support for and help for. They have anger issues. PTSD creates anger issues, sleeplessness, nightmares. Crowds are difficult for them.

There's just -- they forget where they're going sometimes. And so those challenges are there for that, the caregiver, the spouse when they return, and there's not a lot of information. They may know that they suffer from PTSD or they suffer with traumatic brain injury, but they don't really understand how that's going to impact their family. And the problem is that when they get home and they're together, there's this high, they're so excited about being home. And the deterioration happens very slowly and very subtly.

And it's difficult for the spouse to understand that this isn't about the marriage, it's not about anything that they have done wrong. It's not about the veteran having done anything wrong. It's about these demons that are forever trapped in their heads that came home with them.

There are some resources there for the caregiver, but not as many as there should be. And even less for families where PTSD and traumatic brain injury are the major issue. It doesn't rise to a level of disability that is supported through the V.A. caregiver program.

So there's just not a lot out there for them, and often they are isolated, they feel overlooked for their service and unappreciated. There's a good reason why the Dole Foundation refers to them as hidden heroes. The community doesn't understand what they're going through, and unfortunately quite often even close family members do not realize what is going on in the home.


And so, they are really isolated without support, and the purpose of our organization is to validate them, support them, provide them with education and resources, and let them know that somebody is thinking about them, somebody cares and is following through to help them. You know, they are living a life of sacrifice forever because they fell in love with a combat veteran.

PAUL: Yes. So, so tell me real quickly about your adopt-a-spouse program. This is a campaign that is starting for the holidays.

WELLER: Exactly. This is a program where we solicit for sponsors and we, along with the sponsors, adopt a veteran spouse. The organization will adopt several, as many as we can afford to do financially.

And then we pair the spouse with a caregiver and we ask them to provide a minimum $50 gift for the spouse, because often these spouses don't get gifts. The veteran can't deal with crowds, can't go out and shop, and so they just don't receive any gifts for themselves. They're worried about making sure the family has a wonderful holiday.

So we say a minimum of a $50 gift for the spouse and $100 to help with the holiday meal. We put them together and we ask the sponsor to shop for the gifts and communicate with the caregiver. If they just want to sponsor but not do that, then my organization will shop and make those choices with the caregiver. And then as I said, we do adopt some purely through the organization itself.

PAUL: Denise, thank you so much for everything you're doing. And again, we say a huge thank you to your son for the service that he gave.

WELLER: Thank you.

PAUL: We appreciate both of you.

WELLER: Thank you.


SAVIDGE: "INSIDE POLITICS" is up after a quick break.