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Defense Claims George Floyd Was Resisting Arrest When He Said "I Can't Breathe," As Officers Tried To Get Him In Car; Ten Members Of Congress Join Lawsuit Against Trump; Study: One In Three COVID Survivors Suffers From Neurological Or Psychological Condition Within Six Months Of Infection. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired April 07, 2021 - 21:00   ET



ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Yes. Well, Kaitlan Collins, thanks very much, and also, happy birthday.


COOPER: Take care.

The news continues. Want to hand things over to Chris for "CUOMO PRIME TIME." Chris?

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: All right, appreciate you, Coop.

I am Chris Cuomo and welcome to PRIME TIME.

The embers of the division that sparked the terror attack at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th, those embers still burn three months later, and are now trying to ignite a collective ignorance about what happened on that infamous day, and why.

Now it's "Well it wasn't really that big a deal. Not enough guns to be an insurrection. Don't know why the FBI called it terror."

Well, lawmakers are suing to make sure the truth can never be contaminated by an unjust cause.

10 more lawmakers have added their names, to the first civil lawsuit, filed, to hold Trump legally accountable for the terror that still haunts many of them. In the suit, they each describe how they narrowly escaped the Trump mob that day, and could have been killed, like five others, who were.

You're looking at one of them on that very day that he thought his life was going to be over. He's joined the suit and tells us why.

And guess who's in tune with the Democrats, our former Republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner, writes in his new book, "(Trump) incited that bloody insurrection for nothing more than selfish reasons, perpetuated by the bullshit he'd been shoveling since he lost a fair election. Watching it was scary, and sad. It should have been a wake-up call for

a return to Republican sanity."

"Should have been" are the key words. It wasn't. Instead, there are too many indications that the Right is dominated by a Trumpy fringe that wants to double down on division.

Exhibit A is, of course, over at Hate TV.


TUCKER CARLSON, FOX NEWS HOST: They didn't have guns, but a lot of them had extremely dangerous ideas. They talked about the Constitution and something called their rights.

Neither Lisa Eisenhart nor her son damaged any property at the Capitol or committed any violence. They just walked in to what we used to refer to as the People's House.

Some perspective, please.


CUOMO: OK, here it is. How about perspective on the suspect armed with zip ties, clad in armor, arrested, along with his equally-lovely mom, also charged? "Just a mob of older people, from unfashionable zip codes, protesting mass fraud," the fraud is this farce. It's just another layer on the big lie.

They know 100 officers that they always hold in reverence, except when it goes against their political cause, now, they don't mention them. A 100 officers injured, maimed, one died. What about perspective on them?

The same attackers on January 6th, let's switch a couple of facts. Let's make them almost all Brown people now. Let's make them all almost all of the Muslims now. What do you think homeboy would be doing then? He'd probably be doing the show from his Maine estate in hiding.

They wave that flag over there. And they waved it at that insurrection. And then they used it as a weapon, literally, and figuratively, breaking into the Capitol, and breaking down the reality, trying to corrode the truth, and now trying to erode rights for minorities to vote.

Even the George Floyd murder trial is a casualty of this corrupt cause. You watch this trial at all on - you should, by the way. I know it's weird for me to be on CNN and say this. You should watch coverage over on Hate TV. You would think it was Floyd who's on trial. But no, it is the cops who held him down, as he died.

And we are now entering the most critical phase for both prosecution and defense in this trial, because here's the question now. What caused the death of George Floyd? We've been watching the tapes from all angles for a week and a half.

And I want to show you something that again came up at trial today. We were reminded of something.

The assumption is "Floyd just didn't want to get in that car," right? "He didn't want to be arrested. He just didn't like it." It's not true. Floyd told the cops something when they were trying to force him into the car. And here it is.


GEORGE FLOYD, AMERICAN HIP-HOP ARTIST: I'm not that kind of guy. I'm not that kind of guy, man.


FLOYD: You all, I'm going to die in here.


FLOYD: I'm going to die, man.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You'll need to take a seat right now.

FLOYD: And I just had COVID, man. I don't want to go back to that.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, I'll roll the windows down.



FLOYD: Dang, man.


CUOMO: Now, it doesn't matter if he's right about catching COVID again. He had a reason. Now, it doesn't make it OK. He still was supposed to comply. But it wasn't simple non-compliance. You understand the distinction?


It will matter to jurors almost certainly. Floyd saying, "I had COVID. I don't want to get it again. I'm claustrophobic. I have anxiety," these things could well matter, in terms of what was reasonable in the situation for the officers.

Key determination will be what jurors see as substantial causal factors. Substantial causal factors, it is a legal term on the books in Minnesota, and it will make all the difference in this trial.

Let's bring in the better minds to weigh the arguments of both sides, Elliot Williams, and Van Jones. And we did have punches thrown and landed by both sides today. So it's good to have two of you to do this. Thank you for joining me.

Elliot, am I right in the assertion that substantial causal factor is worth learning, understanding, and thinking about, if you want to process what's going to happen here?

ELLIOT WILLIAMS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST, FORMER FEDERAL PROSECUTOR, FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL: Right. And it's a complicated term. These are terms that mean - make total sense to us, in English, but they're complicated legal terms.

Now, it doesn't, under the law in Minnesota, it doesn't have to be the sole thing that caused an individual's death, but, just as you said, the substantial causal factor. Now, it's hard to watch that video, from where we, sit and see how Chauvin's knee was not the substantial causal factor.

But again, what the defense has been doing is putting up any number of factors, and this came up a lot today, this question of drug use, and "Did he have drugs in the system? Did he have drugs in the police car?" and so on, that might have complicated this question of what caused his death.

The defense has a very high burden here. I mean, well, the defense doesn't have a burden. But the defense's work is cut out for it, in light of the video. But no, this is an important term to learn. And it's going to keep coming up, over the next several days.

CUOMO: Van, ordinarily, it's minutia that is rightfully ignored by 99 percent of people, unless they're in the trial, prosecuting and defending the case.

But the jury instruction is going to be a huge battle here about how that phrase is defined, and what it could mean under these circumstances. But let's not get ahead of ourselves.

What Elliot just referred to, these disputes over what Floyd was saying and communicating, it had a heavy role today, let's play an excerpt.


ERIC NELSON, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Ask you, sir, to listen to Mr. Floyd's voice.


FLOYD: I ain't do no drugs (ph).


NELSON: Did you hear that?


NELSON: Did it appear that Mr. Floyd said, "I ate too many drugs"? REYERSON: Yes, it did.


FLOYD: I ain't do no drugs. Please! Please! Please! Officer (ph) please!


STEVE SCHLEICHER, PROSECUTION ATTORNEY: Having heard it in context, are you able to tell what Mr. Floyd is saying there?

REYERSON: Yes, I believe Mr. Floyd was saying "I ain't do no drugs."

SCHLEICHER: So, it's a little different than what you were asked about when you only saw a portion of the video, correct?

REYERSON: Yes, sir.


CUOMO: Relevance, Van Jones?

VAN JONES, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR, FORMER OBAMA ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, look, what the defense is trying to do is to convince us that in the middle of this whole thing, George Floyd suddenly confessed to these police officers, who he liked so much, and trusted so much, that he had taken a whole bunch of drugs.

That is highly unlikely. Just if you look at the totality of the situation, it's much more likely that he's tried to exonerate himself. "I haven't done drugs. I can't breathe. I'm trying to," he's trying to talk himself out of the situation.

But why are they doing it? They are trying to plant this doubt in the minds of the jury, that maybe what happened is that this guy had just swallowed a bunch of drugs, and that's what killed him. Therefore, all of the misconduct that you saw from the police officers doesn't matter, because that's what killed them.

And to your point earlier, this could come down literally to an article, a substantial cause, or the substantial cause, like literally, you're going to - the jury instruction is going to be fought over down that if it's the substantial cause, and you now believe that he confessed to having taken a bunch of drugs, which I think is ridiculous, then maybe the police officer walks.

If it's a cop, you're literally going to be in that kind of a conversation, trying to get to the truth of the matter.

But I thought what happened today was despicable. I thought it was despicable, to take a man, who was dying, and struggling for his life, and to try to take his words, and use those words against him, when no matter what he said, the reality is that training says you don't have your knee on his back for 9 minutes. You still can't escape the basic misconduct. But that - we're now down

to the despicable conduct on the part of this defense - of the defense, to try to take his words, you can't make them out, and twist them against him, to try to get the officer off.

CUOMO: He was--

JONES: It's literally ludicrous that he would be saying that he had just taken a bunch of drugs. It doesn't even make any sense.

CUOMO: Especially as a guy who didn't want to get arrested.

JONES: Exactly.

CUOMO: Here was the other pivotal moment in terms of what Floyd said and meant, Elliot.



NELSON: Do you remember him saying, at that point, "I can't breathe?"


NELSON: He was saying to the police officers, at that point, "I can't breathe?"


NELSON: As he was actively resisting their efforts to put him into the squad car?


NELSON: Have you ever had a person feign a physical ailment as you attempted to arrest them?



CUOMO: This has been the most effective shot, by the defense, thus far in the trial, about something that had been damning, which was, Floyd repeatedly telling the cops that he was in distress.

Did it land for you, Elliot?

WILLIAMS: Well, it did. But here's the thing. It defies common sense to say that somehow he's faking an ailment, or whatever, to avoid getting apprehended by the police, when just a few moments later, he's on video not - and let's not focus on the 9-plus minutes of the entire video.

There's a - and they go through this, in the timeline today, there's a full 4.5 minutes, after he stops verbalizing anything, after which Chauvin had - still has his knee on Floyd's neck.

So, the idea that he might have been saying "I can't breathe" prior, and that that was itself, an act of escalation, is just completely undermined, and frankly, blown out of the water, by the fact that there's nearly 5 minutes - Chris, that's longer than this segment that you, me and Van, are talking on right now, or just about the whole length of it.

It is a long time, and not even the full length of the 9.5 minutes just after he stopped making any noise. So it's yes, the defense has a number. That's their job. They have to throw a lot up, at the wall, and see what sticks. But that 4.5 minutes, where you have a lifeless body with a knee on it, completely undermines that argument.

CUOMO: That was a really good point about how you establish duration, and how the prosecution will play with that, in their closing, especially.

How will they communicate Van, to people exactly what we're talking about here, which is, "It's not something they did once. It's not something that they had to make a split-second call. They had nothing but time."


CUOMO: "And they still never varied course."

JONES: And the other thing I think is important to say is that the officers have been trained to deal with the situation well.

This is not something that's never happened in the history of American policing, that somebody didn't want to get into a car, and then you had to handcuff them on the ground. This happens every day.

And you don't ordinarily see though crowds gathering, and screaming, and crying, and begging. And you don't ordinarily see EMTs begging "Let me try to help."

The only thing that's unusual is the way that the - that Chauvin conducted himself, and the fact the other cops didn't do anything.

But if this was some situation, nobody had ever heard of, "It's way outside of training. What are you supposed to do? We're in a submarine, and we're upside down," this is literally just basic policing that took a macabre turn.

And so, again, I think that what they're trying to do is throw so much dust in the eyes of these jurors that they forget what we all saw with the video.

CUOMO: But the question is, will the jurors?

You can say whatever you want about when he said, "I can't breathe," and how many times he said it, and what he really meant, and what people have seen in the past. He died, right? So obviously, something went wrong, because the man is dead. So, if he was faking it, why is he dead?

Elliot Williams, Van Jones, thank you very much for weighing in on this. You're value to the audience.

There's a figure that we got to start talking about. We can't talk about Matt Gaetz without talking about somebody else, somebody who is already in hot water, for a lot of the same types of behavior that Matt Gaetz is, I believe in no coincidence, being investigated for.

This man is his friend, Joel Greenberg. And he is in trouble. He faces nearly three dozen federal charges, and has a hearing tomorrow.

Now, the question is will federal authorities really put the pressure on Greenberg to give them something on Gaetz? Would he do that? What will it mean? Is there a chance that this is about more than even Greenberg and Gaetz?

Let's go to somebody who knows North Florida, knows the rumors, knows the context, and can give us some insight. A journalist who knows all of what you want to know, next.









CUOMO: Tomorrow, there is a court hearing to watch for, when it comes to the sex crime allegations against Congressman Matt Gaetz. Gaetz won't be there. And his name probably won't even be mentioned.

But the man who will be there is named Joel Greenberg. And he has real legal troubles that come with a wild story of bizarre behavior, and all kinds of personal and political intrigue that has been fodder in North Florida for speculation for years. And his relationship with Matt Gaetz is absolutely part of that story.

Keep in mind, Greenberg was a tax collector in Seminole County. It's a four-hour drive from Gaetz's district. And yet, we will learn that the two of them were together a lot, and they weren't just bumping into each other.

So, what could this mean, starting with tomorrow? Let's get insight on the ground with Jeff Weiner, who is Reporter with the Orlando Sentinel.

Jeff, thanks for doing this.


CUOMO: So, let's begin at the beginning. Joel Greenberg, why should the audience care?

WEINER: Yes. So, Joel Greenberg, there's many answers to that question.

Locally, our audience started caring about him in 2016, when he surprised everyone by defeating a longtime incumbent to become tax collector, in Seminole County, which is just outside Orlando.


It's not usually a very exciting office. But with Greenberg, in the office, it was one that was constantly swirled with controversy, from the time that he announced that his staff, who were not police officers, would begin to openly carry firearms, to his carrying of a tax collector badge, that he, at one point, used to pull over a driver, to schemes that involved flipping properties that were owned by the tax collector's office, all kinds of controversies, and a lot of which we reported on, over the years, including contracts that he handed out to friends, relatives, including several members of his own bridal party.

This is somebody who was always kind of a subject of controversy here in Central Florida. And really only here, it was somebody that anyone from around here, would know is a controversial figure that was not a national figure.

That began to change last year, however, when he was indicted by federal prosecutors, in indictment that has since then, been replicated three more times. He's facing 33 counts, federally all kinds of allegations. We're talking about stalking, sex trafficking, embezzlement, wire fraud, pretty much anything you can think of.

CUOMO: And when--

WEINER: And now--

CUOMO: --when I ask people, about this guy's story, and they are from Florida, and know North Florida, they say two things to me.

When I say "Is there any connection with Matt Gaetz, you know, like?" "Absolutely," they say "Absolutely. Personally? Absolutely. You can't say that there isn't one."

And they say, secondly, "We can't believe it's taken this long for this relationship, and this controversy, to make it into the news." Why?

WEINER: I think it's fair to say that Greenberg and Gaetz were similar figures, and also were very friendly with each other. They were often seen around Seminole County, which is fairly far from

Matt Gaetz's district, out at restaurants together, bars together, in social occasions. They were fond of taking selfies of each other, posing and posting their photos.

And also, even as Joel Greenberg was often in the news locally, for controversies, Gaetz was often in the statewide and national news for controversies.

And a lot of the things that have come out about him, in the past few weeks, are things that were somewhat open secrets, here in Florida politics, about him, participating in a game reportedly that involves assigning points for sexual conquest with women in Tallahassee.

Basically, both of these guys were figures who kind of were always at the center of one controversy or another, and also, were often in each other's orbit. Joel Greenberg is somebody who liked to be connected, it seemed--

CUOMO: Right.

WEINER: --to powerful, influential figures. And I don't think that there were any that he was - that he seemed to be closer with, at least from the public indications, to Matt Gaetz.

CUOMO: Now, for me, I don't really care what Greenberg and/or Gaetz did on their private time. I only care about criminality. And when I look at the charging documents, it's not the redactions. I agree with you. It's the gaps in information.

It seems like prosecutors believe there is more here, there are more players, and there is more behavior that matters to them. And that becomes the tricky question about Matt Gaetz, because can it be a coincidence that Greenberg is being prosecuted for what Gaetz is being investigated on?

WEINER: Yes, and I think, according to a lot of the reporting that's been done by your outlet, many other outlets, indicate that they - what is being investigated about Gaetz very much does overlap with what's been charged - did with Joel Greenberg, particularly as it comes to the sex trafficking offenses.

Greenberg is accused of essentially trafficking a girl, who, according to the charging document, was between 14-years-old and 17-years-old, and using the resources of his office, in part, to assist in that, to enable the trafficking of this girl. And obviously, it's been reported, I believe, by "The New York Times" that the same girl is at the center of the Gaetz investigation.

And, your outlet and mine have reported about a visit that Gaetz and Greenberg paid to the tax collector's office, at night, on a weekend, where they were seen, in the office, the same office, where prosecutors say that Greenberg was producing fraudulent documents for himself and for the purposes of this alleged trafficking.

So, I think that the ties between the two investigations are clear. But obviously, there are gaps in the information, in the charging documents, against Greenberg. And there's a lot that we don't know about exactly what federal authorities are looking into about Gaetz, or how strongly those offenses, you know, those allegations actually are.

CUOMO: Right.

WEINER: Gaetz has denied everything. And we obviously, you know, he's not charged with any crime, unlike Greenberg, who's charged with so many crimes. We're basically just I think glimpsing the tip of the iceberg, but we don't know what's underwater.


CUOMO: True. And the old expression, "You can indict a ham sandwich. It's all the prosecutors show. There is no pushback." It's about what comes next and whether or not Greenberg makes it about Matt Gaetz as well.

You'll be watching, so will I. We'll meet again. Jeff Weiner, thank you very much for setting the table for us.

WEINER: Thanks for having me.

CUOMO: All right, some news on our watch.

A big announcement is coming from President Biden tomorrow, but we've learned what the substance of it is tonight, executive action on gun control. Gun control, one of the most polarizing issues in America, we know that. The more shootings, the more controversial it becomes.

What can he do unilaterally through executive order, and what does he need Congress to do? We have a look, next.




JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I don't need to wait another minute, let alone an hour, to take commonsense steps that will save the lives in the future and to urge my colleagues in the House and Senate to act.

We can ban assault weapons.

And it brought down these mass killings. We should do it again.


CUOMO: Interesting, President Biden, last month, following the mass shootings in Boulder, Colorado.

Tomorrow, he is expected to announce his first executive actions on gun control. But we already hear what some of them are. And they will fall short of the sweeping actions he promised as a candidate. But one of the big reasons for that is he can't do it alone. He can't do it by executive action, or at least he shouldn't.

Phil Mattingly joins us now. When you look at what we're hearing is going to happen, what stands out to you in terms of what he will do and what he can't do?

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, a couple key points in terms of what the President's going to announce, in the Rose Garden, tomorrow, with Justice Department Attorney General Merrick Garland standing next to him.

And the first and probably most important one is "Personnel Is Policy." I think everybody knows that. And the President will announce the nominee to run the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. This is a crucial post.

And who he's nominating in David Chipman is, one, a former ATF Special Agent, but two, somebody who is a key player in a gun control group, started by Gabby Giffords, obviously the former Democratic Congresswoman, who survived an assassination attempt back in 2011.

He is unapologetically for tighter restrictions on guns. That is a key post, particularly because it hasn't been filled in more than six years, often very difficult to confirm those nominees for that post.

On the policy side of things, you get to see some of the limits that the Biden administration is running up against.

In the policy prescriptions that the President will lay out tomorrow, a couple things, one, asking the Justice Department to promulgate rules regarding so called "Ghost guns." These are basically guns that can be put together piece-by-piece and don't have a serial number. The Administration has become very concerned about the proliferation of those guns.

Also, stabilization braces, something you can put on a pistol, to help with accuracy and stabilization, it was something that was used in the shooting that we saw in Boulder, Colorado.

Moving funds to really invest in communities, where violence is a major problem is a key piece of this.

And also, the Justice Department will be crafting what they consider kind of guideposts for so called "Red Flag" laws. They won't be implementing it, "Red Flag" laws, but it will be something for states to look at, as they seek to impose "Red Flag" laws.

But administration officials, Chris, making clear, this is the first step. They want to do more unilaterally. But, as you noted, there's only so much they can do without Congress.

CUOMO: Sure, and people say it's not enough. Yes, but at least it's a start. And we'll see how much of it--

MATTINGLY: Yes. CUOMO: --he actually gets to make an impact with.

Phil Mattingly, thank you very much for giving us the heads-up on this.

All right, now, as I said earlier in the show, there are many people on the Right, specifically the Trumpy fringe, who want you to pretend that as we mark three months, since the insurrection, and the infamy of January 6th, "Wasn't that big a deal," they want you to believe that.

10 more lawmakers say "That's part of the big lie." And so, they've joined a federal lawsuit against Trump for the Capitol terrorist insurrection. They want him held responsible, or at least liable, in civil court, for the terror that sent them, and their colleagues, running for their lives on January 6th. What do they think this will do?

We have two House Members who signed on to this, to talk about why they did it, and what they want, next.









CUOMO: Do not let the attack of January 6th be watered down just to advance a political agenda. The truth matters. And the truth was clear.

Too often, we stop showing the footage of traumatic events. And I always tell you, "This will be hard to watch. But you need to see it." I've covered enough terrible days to tell you the people who lived through it, still see it when they close their eyes. And I'm not overdramatizing it.

But I'm telling you, if you had been in the Capitol, and you had heard this, and knew that this was going on, and you knew they were coming for you, and you heard it being shouted, and the cops were freaking out, and telling you to be careful, and get out of here, and run this way, run that way, you'd remember.

Set aside the fact that in this case, those people are politicians, the title of Representative or Senator doesn't eliminate your humanity, doesn't make you any more bulletproof. Today, you see 10 more Democratic Members of Congress signing on to a lawsuit against Trump and Giuliani claiming they, along with groups, like the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, they incited the attack.

Two of those lawmakers are Representatives Steve Cohen, and Bonnie Watson Coleman, and they join us now.

It's good to see you both. I wish it were for different reason.

REP. BONNIE WATSON COLEMAN (D-NJ): Thank you for having me.

REP. STEVE COHEN (D-TN): Thank you.

CUOMO: Now, Congressman Cohen, we've talked about this a little bit before. But with the passage of time, how often do you relive the events of that day?

COHEN: I think about it--

COLEMAN: Just about every day.

CUOMO: You know what? We'll let - I've talked to you about it already, Steve. I'll come back to you.

Representative Coleman, you said you think about it every day. Why?

COLEMAN: Well, you see it on television, someone makes a comment, someone ask how am I doing, having been exposed to Coronavirus, so every day, you are reminded of it to some extent, so maybe not every, every day, but quite frequently.

CUOMO: And--

COLEMAN: And it's not something that you're going to forget.

CUOMO: And is it just that you're being reminded or do you have hard feelings from that day?

COLEMAN: That - I don't know what you mean by hard feelings.

CUOMO: Pain, fear, anxiety.

COLEMAN: Yes, well, and anger. Yes, absolutely.


There's no way that you can't be affected by it from an institutional perspective, with the assault upon our democracy, from a collective perspective, where you could hear the wrestling and the tussling and the chanting outside of the rooms that you were being held in, and that you didn't know what to expect next.

So, my greater fears, in terms of my personal security, became more evident, as I watched it after the fact, because I had been closeted during the majority of it, and I didn't have the benefit of anyone coming in and giving me updates. And the little bit I saw, on a television, in one room that I was in, was mostly what was happening outside. And I just knew that whatever was happening that I could hear on the inside, that our Capitol Police had it under control. I just I knew that. I mean, it never occurred to me that they wouldn't have it under control.

CUOMO: Well, it never occurred to them--

COLEMAN: So leaving--

CUOMO: --that they would have to take on more than a 1,000 people when they weren't set up for that.

Let me bring Representative Cohen. And we've talked about this before, and you had said Congressman, that time was not a friend to you in terms of how you felt about this day, and what it meant to you personally, and about what could have happened? How do you feel now?

COHEN: Well, I feel the same way. We just celebrated Passover.

Passover, Jewish people are instructed, over two centuries, to remember 2,000 years, over 2,000 years, to remember that we were in bondage, and we escaped, and to remember that day, and to teach others about it.

January 6th is a day like that. It's a day that should be remembered in America because our democracy was at stake. This was an attack on our democracy, as much as Pearl Harbor was an attack on our country.

And for people to suggest that it wasn't that big of a deal, that it was just some folks, who were demonstrating and protesting, and most of the people just good people, and they're mostly just fine citizens, going up there to protest, malarkey.

This was an attack on the United States Constitution. They wanted to upset the Electoral College and to make Donald Trump, the President, to eliminate people that stood in his way, which included his Vice President, which included the Speaker of the House, and they wanted to intimidate the Congress, to support Ted Cruz's position, and whatever the guy's name is, from Missouri.

CUOMO: Hawley.

COHEN: Hawley, yes.

CUOMO: Well let me--

COHEN: His position.

CUOMO: --let me come back to the point about what's being remembered, and what is being forgotten. But I want to go back to you, Congressman Coleman, about what do you think this lawsuit will achieve?

COLEMAN: I pray that this lawsuit achieves accountability and consequences. I believe that this lawsuit is going to result in Donald Trump, and

Giuliani, and the Oath Keepers, and the Proud Boys, and the folks associated with them that had collaborated to the point that with all their falsification, after the election, of who won, were stroking people up with planning this day on January 6th, that they're held accountable for it.

I hope that we recognize through this effort also, that this was an overt intentional suppression of the minority vote. Because when you think about where the votes were being challenged, they were being challenged in communities that voted for Joe Biden, that were predominantly Black and Brown.

And so, I want people to recognize the totality of what this was. This was not just an assault upon democracy, although, in and of itself that is a horrible experience. But this was also a 2021 attempt to suppress the Black vote, to harass us, to intimidate us, and to make our vote, not count.

CUOMO: Steve, I'll give you last word on this proposition. I believe that you guys - look, I get why you're doing the lawsuit. I believe you're losing the messaging war on January 6th. Now, the media, in history, won't let it be forgotten, won't let it be perverted.

But the Republicans ignore it actively all the time. It's the first time I've ever seen people on the Right not want something to be called a terror attack. They always come after me because I don't say "It's terror" fast enough. This one, they say it shouldn't have been called terror.

You got a whole network that's telling people, "It wasn't that bad. They didn't even have guns. They were just patriots."

And the Democrats are not loud and proud on this all the time, the way Congressman Coleman just was, and the way you are, when we talk about it. It's not a main messaging vehicle for your Party. And I don't understand why.


COHEN: I agree with you, Chris. But I'm in a minority in my Caucus. The leadership wants to play everything very, very - above everything, try to rise above it, and to be solemn and be sanctified and all those things.

What Bonnie was saying, about the minority vote, yes, it was the minority vote, but it was a way to get control of the government.

And when Donald Trump said on that day, "You won't have a country, if you don't go up there and fight, fight hard," when he said, "You won't have a country," he was saying, "The Blacks, the Jews, the minorities, the gays, they're going to be in charge. And you, the White straight evangelicals, who are here with me today, your country will not be yours, you will not have a country."

He was basically telling them to go take your country back from the Blacks, the Jews, the gays, the different people that they do not like. And that was a call from Trump and it was racist as it's going to be.

And he was involved, in my opinion, with all these folks, Roger Stone was, the whole team was, and they were trying to take over. He didn't give up. He didn't give up. He didn't want to give up power. He liked being President.

CUOMO: Congressman?

COLEMAN: Chris, can I just say one thing in closing?

CUOMO: Yes, ma'am.

COLEMAN: Because I do think that the leadership in our Caucus recognizes that this was a terrorist attack. And I think it's spoken to it.

But I had to tell you that Donald Trump left this government in such bad shape, with every institution, every agency broken, with laws and rules and regulations that have to be overturned, that we're trying to get business done as well.

So, if you don't hear us talking about it every day, it doesn't mean that isn't on our minds, and it doesn't mean that we're not trying to get a Commission to look at this. It means that we're trying to get things back to the communities that they need, the rescue that they need from the Coronavirus, the infrastructure that we need.

CUOMO: I hear you.

COLEMAN: All of these important things need to be done. But there is no, in any way shape or form, diminishing the significant insurrection that took place on January the 6th.

CUOMO: Understood. Congressman Steve Cohen, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, thank you very much to you both. And be well.

COLEMAN: Thank you for having me.

COHEN: You're welcome.

CUOMO: We'll be right back.









CUOMO: Let's bring in the Chief Doctor, Sanjay Gupta, with a couple of quick updates.

First is, good to see you brother, what do you say to people who say--


CUOMO: --"Yes, I know, the U.K. variant is in all 50 states now. I know it's worse for kids. I don't care. I'm over it. I want to get back to life." What do you say?

GUPTA: I say that this is a more transmissible variant. It's the things that you could sort of get away with, before, you're going to have a harder time getting away with, now, because this virus just spreads more easily.

CUOMO: "But they don't die. People don't die."

GUPTA: I think that--

CUOMO: "They just get sick. And that's OK."

GUPTA: They don't - right, the younger people are far less likely to get sick or obviously be hospitalized or die.

But you still have a significant percentage of people out there, who are still vulnerable. We're getting so close to really coming a long way in terms of actually protecting the people, who are most likely to get sick. But we're not there yet.

So it's - what do I say? I say we are so close to the finish line, if you want to use the sports metaphor, wouldn't you hate to be the guy who fumbles the ball, somebody gets hurt, when we're so close to the end here? That's the problem.

We feel the light on our faces at this point. These variants and the vaccines, this is the race that we're talking about. We're making pretty good progress with the vaccines, but we're not done yet.

CUOMO: Now, the battle, in terms of what this virus has done to so many is the story yet to be told. We're in crisis mode. It'll come in the future.

But I wanted to highlight this study, because I hear about this from people all the time, not just they have long-haul or long, whatever you want to call it, but that they don't want to talk about the fact that their head is different, and that their mental health has been affected.

I didn't like saying it because everybody takes shots at me on social media, whenever I say that I have brain fog, or that it gave me bouts of depression.

GUPTA: I'm sorry.

CUOMO: I mean, I don't really give a - I don't care what people say about me. But I know that people are worried about it. And they don't want to be perceived that way. And that's why I want to start early.

One out of three COVID survivors suffer neurological or psychological symptoms. Now, what does that tell us, and how careful should we be to not continue the culture of stigmatization of it being physical versus mental?

GUPTA: Well, we should absolutely not be stigmatizing this. And I think this has been a learning experience for a lot of people.

I mean, we talk about some of these diagnoses with other types of infections as well. I mean, people have developed sort of neurological or even psychological psychiatric symptoms, after flu, for example.

But what we're learning about this from this pretty large study is that this is more significant, 44 percent, 45 percent, more likely to happen after COVID. And as you point out, it can be persistent. It can last a long time.

So, they basically looked at 250,000 patients, Chris, who had been diagnosed with COVID, and followed them along and, as you point out, that a third of them had one of these diagnoses.

Anxiety, mood disorders were the most common. Rare, but happening as well were things like a brain hemorrhage, ischemic stroke, dementia. So these are obviously significant problems. Some of those rare, I want to - I want to emphasize that.


GUPTA: But what is interesting as well Chris, is that they bifurcated the neurological and psychiatric sort of diagnoses.

With the neurological, we're learning more and more about how this virus may crossover into the areas that are responsible for smell. The olfactory nerve causes inflammation there, which is why people lose their smell, but maybe also causing inflammation in other parts of the brain.

CUOMO: Right.

GUPTA: It's quite extraordinary. Could lead to clotting, could lead to dementia, these other things.


But with the psychiatric diagnoses, is it the disease itself? Is it the isolation that comes with the disease? Is it the loss of income? Point is we don't know. But it's real. It's definitely real.

And if you start to do the math, Chris, you're talking about millions of people who may potentially have these diagnoses, given how prevalent how many infections there has been. CUOMO: Absolutely. And look, I want you guys to listen. Everybody trusts Sanjay, all right?

It's OK if you feel these things. You should go to your doctor and get treatment, just like if your knee swelled up, or if your breathing was really screwed up, for months after having COVID. Get the help. Take care of yourself. I promise you, over time, you're going to see you are not alone.

I'm there with you. I'm getting help. It's making a difference.

Sanjay, thank you for helping me get the help that I need to get better. I love you.

GUPTA: I'm there with you too, brother.

CUOMO: I'll speak to you soon.

GUPTA: Love you too.

CUOMO: Yes, yes.


CUOMO: I need you. I don't want you to ever be in my condition. Take care.

All right, we have a big update on a story we brought you last night. You're going to want to hear this, next.








CUOMO: We got an update for you, on our guest, last night, Georgia Representative Park Cannon, arrested last month, after knocking on the Governor's door, during the bill signing, for that restrictive voting law.

Well let's bring in D. Lemon because we've both been covering this.

Prosecutors confirm today, they won't charge Cannon, whose lawyer told us that she faced eight years in prison.