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McCarthy Falsely Claims No One Is Questioning Legitimacy Of Election After Ousting Cheney; CDC Recommends Use Of Pfizer Vaccine In 12 To 15-Year-Olds; Biden Signs Executive Order To Strengthen U.S. Cybersecurity Defenses Amid Colonial Pipeline Gas Shortages. Aired 9- 10p ET

Aired May 12, 2021 - 21:00   ET




JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR: I mean, he did a lot of really good things, Sinatra, in the 40s and 50s and 60s, for African Americans. But by 1980, he's a Republican. He's campaigning with Reagan. And I think he really shifted. And I think part of that is this essentially breakup with John F. Kennedy.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Well, Jake, congratulations. "The Devil May Dance" is the book. I'm really - I'm really excited about it. Thank you.

TAPPER: Thanks, Anderson.


COOPER: "The Devil May Dance."

That's it for us. The news continues. Let's hand it over to Chris for "CUOMO PRIME TIME." Chris?

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: All right, thank you, Anderson.

I am Chris Cuomo and welcome to PRIME TIME.

This may well be our moment of truth, in terms of our political future, near-term future. But be very clear. Put all the high-minded thoughts away. This may be the moment of truth, but it is not about the truth. And it never has been.

The Republicans, who ran the election, in the States that Trump lied about, they all said he was lying. They certified. They audited. They looked. Why would they want to fix the election, so that their own party would lose? You knew it was always absurd.

They certified. They ran it. Congress certified. And all the Cruz's, and all the Rudy's, and all the King's men couldn't put Humpty back together again.

They were all BS artists, and they brought no proof of anything but their own perfidy. And you know it. And so do the men and women in the party that just collapsed under the weight of its own lies. So, this has never been about the truth, because everybody knows the truth.

And here is the one thing that I know that I hope you agree with. Our political situation is not about Trump, the Party of Trump, or even the Democrats. The key to this situation is you. And this is no cliche. This is no mamby pamby kumbaya. I hope you have had it. You should have had it.

The only answer, if you want anything better in this situation, in terms of what you control, right, you must ignore the state of play. Stop paying attention to which side is saying what about what the other one is doing. Stop.

Stop allowing them to do that, by not paying attention by not valuing it by not commenting on it. Stop looking to the politicians, and their proxies, for better, because they can't give you better. They literally can't. Not won't, can't, because they are playing a game. And what has to change is the game.

You know this from your own life. What have you said to yourself? What have you said to others? What have they said to you? "Don't hate the player. Hate the game. Change the game. Don't let the game change you." These are not just hip-hop lyrics.

We know these truths to be self-evident in our own lives. Make it happen. Focus on who matters. If people don't tell you the truth, don't listen to them. Start treating government, like you do everything else. The players will play the game. Period! That's all they can do because they are in the game.

Kevin McCarthy is just like Joe McCarthy. He's playing a lie to advantage. Then when it is exposed, you pretend you're not doing what you just did, in this McCarthy's instance, by getting rid of Cheney.

Listen to this.


REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): I don't think anybody is questioning the legitimacy of the presidential election. I think that is all over with. We're sitting here with the President today.


CUOMO: Now, how does he say that BS with a straight face? Because he's playing a game. Don't expect better from him. He is not capable of it. "Big tent, not like the Left," axed Cheney for refusing to lie.

"There are real questions that need answers about this election." "We're not questioning the election." "I told Trump. I threw the F word around. And I told him "Call off your dogs." "The President said "I'll get right on it," and did it right away."

It's a fool's game. His lies are painfully obvious because that's all the game requires. So, stop allowing the game. How? By what you focus on in demand, what you value in your media, and what you respond to. That's why Cheney matters, because she is just proof of the reality.

Cheney is not some towering paragon of integrity. She's not some new Patrick Henry, shouting "Give me liberty, or give me death!" or changing the balance. It's a major moment in our history.


She's not Margaret Chase Smith. She didn't identify the "Four Horses of Calumny." Amazing speech, by the way, you should read it. Declaration of Conscience, June 1, 1950. Every bit is relevant today.

Fear, ignorance, bigotry and smear. Talk about a recipe! You put that in a bowl. Pop! Out pops Trump!

She is as right today as when she took on that era's McCarthy. Now we got Kevin. Then they had Joe.

But Cheney does deserve the legacy of Margaret Chase Smith in one way. She does warrant using the speech title of a Declaration of Conscience. Because she came out and said, "Look, I'm just not going to tell an absurd lie."


REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): I will do everything I can to ensure that the former president never again gets anywhere near the Oval Office.


CUOMO: Now, you find me any other example, in American history, of someone saying, "I refuse to agree with you because you are lying," and the people accused of the lie, do nothing to prove that they are right.

Find me one. You won't. And you know why? The game doesn't require it. It's like being the Jets fan. They suck. But if that's your team, you just stay with them.

But this is not sport. This is not entertainment. It's about ourselves, our health, our kids, and our future.

70 percent of the Party of Trump believe this election was legitimate. So, this can't be about them. This has to be about the rest of you, the open, in many cases, the independent.

Let's be honest. Half this, country, at least, you guys say, you don't want to be a member of either of these parties. So you have all of you and the 30 percent of the remaining reasonable people within Republican ranks.

Now, for those Republicans, I told you what everybody else, you got to just ignore the game. But for those within the game, because you are the game within the game within that party, are you going to keep paying attention to people like Paul Gosar, who helped incite the Insurrection?

Will you allow him to speak for you by defending the terrorists like this?


REP. PAUL GOSAR (R-AZ): Zero firearms from suspects charged with breaching the Capitol.

To my knowledge, not a single person has been charged with a crime of Insurrection.

Was Ashli Babbitt armed?

No, she wasn't. She was wrapped in a U.S. flag.

The truth is being censored and covered up. As a result, the DOJ is harassing - harassing peaceful patriots across the country.


CUOMO: Look, he's got to read it, because somebody had to make up all that tripe. Harass the peaceful patriots? Charging them with crimes is harassing them? These are peaceful patriots?



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pull them this way.


CUOMO: Attacked more than 100 police officers, on January 6th, the day of infamy that's been declared an act of terror?

He is full of it. And he knows it. He knows the truth. But he's playing the game.

Change the game. Move past Left and Right. The system doesn't work. There are too many people on the spectrum of ideals and wants that need to be stakeholders, and aren't. You need like four, or five, six parties. We're not even anywhere near that conversation.

But you can do this right now. Forget left and right. Only think reasonable. No more blame game. I don't care who said what. Don't pay attention to what they say.

If it's about policy, how they're going to fix, why they believe the problem is what it is? Great! And then my job is, test what they say. But I can't because of them and they would love it. Forget it. You hire them to do a job.

Think about it in your own life. Tub is leaking. You hired them. "Fix the tub." Do you want to hear why the guy who works with them on the team sucks, and that's why the tub is still leaking. You fix it or forget it.

You got to want better. You have to know you deserve better. It does not have to be like this. In your personal lives, when someone says absurd things, or lies to you, you call them out or you cut them off. That's how I want you to see this show tonight.

I am not going to do the political back-and-forth, and what it means that this and that, and Cheney, and - I gave it to you. I showed you the game. I expose the game. And now, I oppose the game. And I discussed the practical.

I have the Head of the CDC on the show tonight. We've wanted her for a long time. Director Rochelle Walensky. The doctor is here.

And I'm going to put it to her straight, about the timing of what they've disclosed to us, and why, and what it has now contributed to political attacks on the vaccine process, and how we get to a better place sooner.


We're going to do the same thing with this pipeline cyber hack, because look, what are they doing? "Biden's to blame! Wait a minute. No, it's you guys. You wouldn't talk about Russia." Who cares? Change the game.

Colonial Pipeline said today it's finally initiated the restart of operations. Is this really something we want completely in the control of the private sector? Biden put out a 30-something page executive order. That's not law.

Look, I'm glad he put something out. I don't mean to take a step tried - toward trying to do the right thing, and smack it. But that's not the answer. Maybe it's a step. But it's not the full pace of progress.

We need to accept the reality that cybersecurity matters. The Right has been sleeping on it. The Left has to show. They don't even have any money for it in the infrastructure plan right now. There's Left, there's Right, and there's reasonable. Let's look at it that way.

What is the reality that the players on the Right can resurrect themselves from this deal with the devil that anything can get done in this state of play? Let's ask one of the few, who is still trying.

Republican Congressman Adam Kinzinger, thank you very much for taking this opportunity.

REP. ADAM KINZINGER (R-IL): You bet. Good to be with you.

CUOMO: And I mean that because you are so very much in demand.

If you had a horn coming out of the middle of your head, and wings on your back, you would not be more of a rare specimen right now, which is a conservative, who is not getting thrown under the bus, who does not believe in the big lie, and holds office in the U.S. Congress.

How does that make you feel?

KINZINGER: Well, it's you feel a little alone, sometimes. But you also feel at ease. I mean, one of the good things about this moment is just - I never thought I'd be in this position. I always thought when it came down to defending the Constitution, and telling the truth, there'd be a lot of us.

But the thing is I can sleep at night. That's what matters. I mean, it puts you in a tough place. But being able to know you're doing the best with the moment you have is worth really more than gold.

CUOMO: How much of you, in the middle of living an Aesop's Fable, of the death of ideals, tells you, "I'm a young guy. I got my whole future in front of me. I got to get the hell out of here. This game is broken. And they're going to break me next. I got to get out of here."

How much of you are thinking that way?

KINZINGER: You have a lot of emotions that target you, in this business, especially in this kind of moment.

But look, I've always known that I'm going to have a life after politics with one of the advantages of getting in young, you don't really see that as your end state. And I think that also really gives you the courage to say, "Look, doesn't mean life after politics. So I'm going to do the right thing."

And - but yes, I mean, there's always temptation, but that's where you got to look. Day-to-day, day-by-day you manage, where can you make a difference? Where can you - where can you have an impact.

And I mean, coming on your show and talking to people is making an impact, even if it takes a while to do it, even if it's something that I'm the only one out there saying the "Election was legitimate. And Joe Biden is legitimately president," somebody needs to. And it's been a lack of people doing that, unfortunately, on our side.

CUOMO: How do you explain it to yourself? You know they all know the truth. Maybe a few of them are so incurious that they're open to suggestion.

But how do you explain this kind of capitulation, the Kevin McCarthy, who's at the head now, resembling Joe McCarthy, as much as anybody else, in terms of chasing people out, because of their ideas, of not wanting to tell a lie?

KINZINGER: So, I think some of it is cowardice. Some of it is people can rationalize in their own mind, "Look, if I speak out, I'm not going to make a personal difference, but I need to survive, so, I can make an impact on health care, whatever legislation they have." And I can understand that line of thinking.

But when it comes down to this Constitution, when it comes down to the Insurrection, that was a whole four months ago, "My goodness, how are we still talking about it?" like this is the kind of thing that isn't about staying in office to affect health care.

This is really the basic function of our job. If we do nothing else in a year, as long as we're defending the Constitution, the Republic will survive.

And in fact, I represent over 700,000 people. I'm the only person in my district that has to swear an oath, in this capacity, to defend the Constitution. I have to swear an oath to my party, to conservatism, to liberalism. I swear to the Constitution.

So that's what I think our top priority has to be. And sadly, I think, some people, it's really become about the culture war, owning the libs or whatever the division is of the day.

CUOMO: You say "We." Your problem is, "It's just "Me." There is no "We."


And you make a good point. I don't know how the men and women in your party, who are going along with this, justify that as anything other than a breach of oath, can they?

KINZINGER: I'm sure, in their mind, they can. And look, I think there are people that legitimately may be believe they're doing the right thing by kind of staying quiet at this moment. I won't begrudge them. But there's a lot of people--

CUOMO: Why won't you begrudge them?

KINZINGER: Well just because everybody has their own train of thinking. I mean, I think everybody gets into this business, to do the right thing, whether you're on the Right or Left. I think a lot of people think they're doing the right thing, but then that's going to--

CUOMO: How can this be the right thing?

KINZINGER: I mean, again, look, I just can't speak for their line of thinking. I think the line of thinking may go, "I'm going to be quiet, so I can make an impact in this area."

But my broader point is, this is that moment, where defending the Constitution, things like saying - I heard some of my colleagues today implying that January 6th really wasn't what it was, or that Ashli Babbitt, for instance, was murdered.

Well, she actually, by the way, was about to breach onto the floor, where there were almost 100 Members of Congress still vulnerable. The reality, it was a really violent day. We can't wash past it. We can't just move on.

The only time we can move on as a party, is if we come to full grips with what we did, what we caused, and what we allowed to happen, then we can move on. Short of that, if you got to pretend like January 6th didn't happen, and maybe the election was illegitimate, you're lying. And lies and truth do not exist. That's a basic biblical foundation.

CUOMO: What is the chance of any future of any type of cooperation between whatever your party now is, because it ain't the Grand Old Party anymore? I don't know what it is, in its new iteration. You have to come up with a name.

What's the chance that they do anything with the Biden administration after McConnell just said, "I'm not here to help him. I want him out."

KINZINGER: Yes, I don't know. It's disappointing.

Look, there are areas we can work together. I do think there's a little a light in infrastructure. It's something that for me personally, I've been calling for, since I've been in Congress. We have a chance to do something in a bipartisan way.

There's a lot of bipartisan stuff that gets done kind of daily anyway, for instance, on my committee. But everybody does bring up a broader point.

And this is one area where I'm going to say, it really does exist on both sides in this, which is people look at every issue and say, "How can we turn that into an election victory." The problem is we have an election every two years. And we're always in an election cycle.

So, the democracy will survive, but it's not even so much people like me that are going to save it or that are going to be responsible for tanking it. It's the American people that have to demand better of their legislators.

And, by the way, you got to vote in a primary. You may not want to vote in a primary. But in many districts, most districts, primary is going to determine, who your representative is.

CUOMO: Well, in your party, they vote in the primaries. They're just going to vote the way Trump tells them.


CUOMO: And that's the problem.

Let me ask you, do you still believe there is a chance in this political system, to go beyond Left and Right, and to do what is reasonable?

KINZINGER: Yes, I certainly do. And I believe that because, the old saying, I think it was attributed to Churchill, which is, "Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing, after they've exhausted all other options."

We have a great history of coming from dark times and doing better things. And I cannot believe that we'll be the first generation that will leave the next generation a country worse off.

I talk to young people, people younger than me, millennials and Zers that I think when they take power, have learned how to actually disagree with each other, and change that system, and I think they're generally more optimistic. They're not ingrained in the old battles we are.

So, is it going to happen soon? I don't know. Today made me a little more pessimistic. But I think ultimately, we'll survive.

The Republican Party will come back, because if there's only two parties, they have to represent half the country. But there may be some damage done to the party under the brand prior to that, because there already has been.

CUOMO: Congressman Adam Kinzinger, I respect your optimism. And it's not empty because you're doing the work, to make it real. And I wish you good luck.

KINZINGER: Thank you. Thank you, sir.

CUOMO: We have exhausted all options in tolerating the game. So, we must change the game, change frame. That takes us to exposing problems.

We now know the CDC has likely played it too safe. Why? And will they now change to help us get to a better place? Who better to answer these questions than the Director of the CDC? Let's get after it, next.









CUOMO: The latest news which you've heard is the CDC recommending that Pfizer's vaccine can be used for teens, 12-to-15-years-old, maybe you'll even be able to mix vaccines. That means 17 million more Americans eligible for vaccination.

But the problem isn't the data or the potential. It's the messaging coming from the top. Is the CDC being straight with us, not just in terms of content, but timing? Do they tell us what they know when they know it? If not, why, and will it change?

So, let's get after it with CDC Director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky.

Dr. Walensky, I appreciate you being on PRIME TIME.


CUOMO: It's good to have you on the show.

WALENSKY: My pleasure. Thanks for having - thanks for having me. CUOMO: All right, so let's get to the main thrust of the situation right now. Find out where we are. Find out where we should be going.


Do you believe that the CDC has caused delays that have affected the vaccine effort?

WALENSKY: Wow, absolutely not. I think our responsibility is to ensure that the public is safe, and that they have confidence in our vaccine, that the safety of the vaccine is ensured by all of our processes, which we have been doing.

And we have demonstrated how we've been able to do that, to find needles in haystacks, and pursue them, and make sure that the vaccines are safe. We have followed the science and our guidance.

The science is complex. It's evolving. It is updating. Thousands of studies every single day, and our job is to make sure that our guidance follows the science, in protecting the American people.

CUOMO: "Doing the job too well. You're playing it too safe." That is the criticism, that you need to be more generous, and what people can do, once they get vaccinated.

There's a UCLA study that is about Republicans. And if you tell them, they can ditch the mask, it increases the likelihood they'll get a shot from 35 percent to 53 percent. Given the science on the vaccines, and its relative prophylaxis, why not make this move?

WALENSKY: So, we have to evaluate the science in several different dimensions. We have to make sure that the effectiveness, how it works in the public, is exactly is similar to how it's working in the clinical trials.

We have the clinical trials. We need to make sure that it's working outside the context of those clinical trials, in the same way.

We have to make sure that it does not lead to asymptomatic transmission, that people are not - not able to get the disease, and give it to somebody else, even if they don't have symptoms. That was not measured in the clinical trial.

And importantly, we need to make sure that they work against our variants. So we now are sequencing over 30,000 virus samples per week. And in that, we are finding an emergence of variants.

We have over 72 percent of the U.K. variant here, right now, of those sequences are the U.K. variant, and other variants as well. And we do need to make sure that the vaccine is working against those variants.

So, it is all of that evolving science that is getting it - going into our decisions about when to lift the mask mandates for vaccinated people.

We have - we have changed our guidance at least three times now, or three times now, in the context of vaccine guidance and in the vaccine rollout. And we're looking forward to updating it again very soon.

CUOMO: You change guidance. The argument against you is - I mean, the CDC. Some of this happened before you.

For example, the WHO said "This is a Pandemic." The CDC delayed. Not on your watch. Then it was about aerosols versus surfaces. And that was known, but it didn't come out with guidance, until much later, really until recently. Now it's outdoor exposure could be 10 percent. The science really says 1 percent.

You're very slow to go there. You're playing it too safe. And there is a cost that comes with that. Is it a cost that we should have to pay?

WALENSKY: I want to be very clear about that last piece, which I think was on my watch, so, the outdoor guidance.

CDC in, as a matter of practice, not only conducts its own science, but reviews the medical literature. That 10 percent - and uses that that medical literature to inform our guidance.

That 10 percent was not a data point from the CDC. That 10 percent was a data point from a peer-reviewed literature, a very well-respected high impact infectious disease journal, the Journal of Infectious Diseases. It was that data point that we use to inform our outdoor guidance.

Regardless, I think we should all be very clear, like there's a lot more transmission that is occurring indoors and outdoors, and is that is what we use to inform our outdoor guidance that says "If you're vaccinated, and outdoors, you can take your mask off.

If you're vaccinated - if you're not vaccinated and outdoors, first of all, get vaccinated, and second of all, if you're spread out, that's really fine. If you have a whole bunch of people piled on top of each other, breathing heavily, probably not a good idea."

CUOMO: Even if vaccinated? Why, when we see so few breakthrough cases?

Now, I'm not arguing the science, one, out of complete respect. I have no business talking science with you, but only the science as stated.

The argument is simple, too safe. There are two arguments here.

One is too safe that causes time and delays, and also creates exposure on the political flank, because now you have the Right saying "See? See? They go too slow. It wasn't as bad as they said it was, about surfaces, about masks, about aerosols, about outdoor. They've been overplaying it the whole time. See? We were right." That's the political side.

The practical side is that there's so few breakthrough cases, we need people to get vaccinated. You need to give them more carrots. Look at the science, and say "The risk is almost de minimis. Take the masks off. Live your life," and let's see who gets vaccinated.

[21:30:00] WALENSKY: Right. You're exactly - your point is exactly where we are.

We need to follow the science, which is emerging every single day, with regard to variants, with regard to transmissibility, with regard to protection. And then, we need to follow our case rates to see, watch people get vaccinated, see how many people are getting vaccinated.

Our job is to protect not just individuals. Our job is to protect populations, as we had high levels of cases, which are now coming down. And our job really is to find the sweet spot at the intersection of all of those. And I'm really looking forward to updating our guidance very soon.

CUOMO: Let's do it right now on this show!

And here's why I say almost in jest, you have the burden of the non- existence effect. What data do you have that suggests you need to go slow before you let people completely unmask and live their lives, if they've gotten the vaccine?

I know you're waiting for the data to say it's safe. But what data do you have that says it's unsafe?

WALENSKY: Well we know that data are emerging have been emerging with regard to the variants, specifically the U.K. variant, the Brazil variant, which is increasing here in the United States, the South Africa variant. Now we have variants coming from India as well.

So, we know those data are forthcoming. They've been emerging through the literature. With those variants here, we do want to make sure that those data are going to be out and demonstrate that our vaccines will work. And I'm looking forward to updating our guidance very soon.

CUOMO: Because look, that's where we are right now. And what's the newest manifestation? Kids.

The vaccine is eligible for 12 to 15. You're going to have a problem with parents like me. It's one thing for me to take it as Emergency Use Authorization. It's another that I want my kids to take it. So, there's going to be a little obstacle there.

We look at the camp guidance. The camp guidance looks like it was designed for last year, not this year. And it makes people worried that you guys are going to put the brakes on about school.

And I don't know - I know that it's science, but you're also part of an administration. I don't know that the Biden Administration can withstand having to tell the American people, "You're not going back to school in the fall."

WALENSKY: So, let me be very clear. I think we should be five days a week, everybody present in school, in the fall. That is - I think our guidance has reflected that. I think we will be in a place in this Pandemic that we will be able to do that. I think we should all be leaning in. We have over 80 percent of our teachers and educators vaccinated, at

this point. We now have this incredible news today that 12-to-15-year- olds can also be vaccinated, along with their 16-year-old and 17-year- old - with 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds.

And I think we should all plan to be full school reopened in the fall. We should all lean into that.

We clearly have to update our camp guidance. We, just this afternoon, after 4 o'clock, signed off on the vaccination between the ages of 12 to 15. So, our camp guidance hasn't yet been updated to handle that. But it will be.

And we're looking forward to making sure that our kids get to camp this summer, because last year they didn't. And when they did, they often got sent home.

CUOMO: Last question. And I appreciate you being on this show. Let me give you the opportunity to deal with what the heart of the criticism is.

It's that you know things, and you don't tell us, because you want to err on the side of caution. And people want to know the information, and they want to make their own choices. How do you respond to that?

WALENSKY: My job is to keep individuals safe. My job is to keep populations safe. My job is to keep counties safe, where we have really high levels of vaccination, and counties safe, where we have really low levels of vaccination, communities safe, where we have low levels of vaccination.

I have been completely forthcoming with respect to the science, with respect to our guidance, with respect to our numbers, with respect to our cases. And I really look forward to updating the guidance, and to providing the science that allows us to do so very soon.

CUOMO: CDC Director Walensky, thank you for being on PRIME TIME.

WALENSKY: Thanks so much for having me.

CUOMO: Now you judge, OK? If the CDC doesn't make it more appealing to be vaccinated soon, are we going to get to herd immunity? That's the question.

Now let's push past the politics on another big problem, the hacked pipeline. It's going to cause pain at the pump for a while. So let's be reasonable. Let's show the practical impact, and then push for a fix with a person in power. Next.








CUOMO: Relief is on the horizon for Americans dealing with mass gas shortages, may be, OK?

Colonial is restarting use of its pipeline after a cyber-attack knocked it offline. But I can't confirm that they're going to do it when they say they're going to do it. And I can't confirm that the supply will make up for the shortfall anytime soon.

70 percent of stations in North Carolina are out of gas, 53 percent in Virginia, nearly half in South Carolina and Georgia. We haven't seen a situation this bad since the 70s. I remember this. And a big part of it was how we treated each other in the situation, and we sucked.

Pete Muntean is in Alexandria, Virginia. What is it like out there? And thanks for being for us.

PETE MUNTEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Chris, you mentioned how 53 percent of stations, here in Virginia, are now without gas. But this is not one of them.

In fact, you can see the pretty long line here. That's because people tell me, here in Alexandria, this is one of the few stations that actually does have gas. People waiting here tell me that they are annoyed. They are the ones who actually need gas, they tell me. They're just trying to take this all in stride.

Here's what they told me.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My daughter called. She said, "Dad, they have gas down the street." This pump right here is not working. The pump on the other side is working fine. I just need some gas, man. This is - this is terrible.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: But I think it's probably a partial mixture of people who actually just need gas and people panicking. I don't know to what degree it's panic. Probably 50/50.

MUNTEAN: How hard is it to find gas around here?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Very difficult. This is the first gas station I've seen in the last couple of hours with gas.


CUOMO: Question is does it get harder?

MUNTEAN: So then--

CUOMO: What do you see in there, Pete, in terms of whether or not people seem like they're there to top off, and fill up, and hoard, fill cans? Or are they just getting it as regular?

MUNTEAN: Well, things are relatively calm here, Chris, thankfully.

We have seen reports of price gouging in North Carolina. The Attorney General says there are 300 cases there just down the border. We haven't seen container after container getting filled up here, although we have seen images of that done in Alabama.

What's so interesting is that the Consumer Product Safety Commission had to warn people today to not fill up plastic bags with gas, a pretty desperate move, and a pretty dangerous one, and even earned a bit of a warning from the White House.

CUOMO: Yes. All right. Pete Muntean, thank you very much. Appreciate you being with us tonight.

Now, to this point, the people have been playing the game. I know I'm banging the point. I'm going to bang the point for a while until you guys see it as clearly as it is. And then we can really deal with it.

They're just pointing fingers at each other. "This is on Biden. Biden is out of gas already." And the Democrats are saying "What are you talking about? You guys wouldn't even deal with cyber. You didn't want to deal with metadata. You didn't want to put money in it." So, where's it gotten us? Nowhere!

What is the right fix? Because remember, this is the private industry. We're going to take it to the Chair of the House Intel Committee. A big executive order for Biden, did that help? Next.









CUOMO: A less subtle form of the same game. Jen Psaki, you know her from the White House, asked about this, and whether or not they're going to put cybersecurity money for pipeline, the Colonial Pipeline and other things for it. "I think, at this point, it will include, as the discussions continue,

tying specific grants to recipients' implementation of cybersecurity goals using tax credits to finance needed cybersecurity improvements."

In other words, no, it is not in the current proposal. They're going to negotiate it and put it in because they have been asleep at this, because it is not an urgency.

The Right doesn't want to do it. The Left just gotten power. This is private. They don't have the same regulation over it. That's the game. See past it. How do we get to a better place?

My next guest chairs the House Intel Committee, which has been briefed on the Colonial Pipeline cyber-attack.

Congressman Adam Schiff, always a pleasure to have you. However, I must have asked a question that defeats my own premise tonight, which is let's just get to the solution.

Can you get to a solution when you cannot do it one-sided?

And you now see that the GOP is dead and buried, and it has now become the Party of Trump. And McConnell made it very clear, "We ain't working with you guys."

Can you do anything to fix anything?

REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): Well, it's very hard. We're working with a party that doesn't have any commitment to the truth. And people who are willing to tell the truth, like Liz Cheney, are essentially kicked out of their leadership. So, it's a truthless party. It's an anti- democratic party now.

All that being said, there are some things that I think we can get to yes, on. But this is a very difficult one.

Years ago, Chris, we tried to pass a major cyber safety bill. And one of the key components of it was requiring that critical infrastructure, whether it's in public or private hands, maintain certain minimum cybersecurity standards, and the GOP wouldn't go for it.

CUOMO: Right.

SCHIFF: And, as a result, this critical infrastructure was unprepared.

CUOMO: But now you have people spooked, so there's an opportunity. The private sector is going to do what any institutional setting does. They're going to keep things quiet as long as they can. You don't have the regulatory reach.

Even that executive order today, I just read through the high points of it. It was like 30-something pages. It's recommendations. It's "Calls for this." There're very narrow requirements on the private sector to report on this, and there is no requirement that they put money into it. How do you fix that? SCHIFF: Well, it's very difficult. One thing that might actually get these industries motivated is the insurance industry. Some insurance industry, are now saying, they're not going to indemnify for these ransomware attacks.

And so the private sector might start to think, "You know? This could bankrupt us, if we don't improve our cyber defenses. And, you know, we don't want to be in a position where the federal government needs to bail out this critical infrastructure."

So, they need to - they need to put in place proper protections. The federal government should help them. But it needs to be required, because it's not just a private company that suffers. It's the American people.

CUOMO: 100 percent. Required means you. Have you heard any indication from the other party? Again, we got to come up with a name for them. I don't know what they are anymore. They're not the GOP. That they care about this enough to do something about it, or are they satisfied to just say it's Biden's fault?

SCHIFF: Well, at the moment, they're satisfied to just blame everything on Biden. What will dictate their position, frankly, is what usually dictates their position. And that is money.

If private industry doesn't want to take on the obligation of protecting its own infrastructure, they're going to tell the GOP "Don't do it. Don't support it. We're not for it. We will dry up the dark money, whatever it takes."

And so, unfortunately, they are a party very much beholden to big industry. And up till now big industry has not wanted to have any kind of a mandate to maintain even minimal cybersecurity best practices.

CUOMO: Well, this is an opportunity because Colonial is not unique. We farmed out a lot and outsourced a lot of infrastructure, because we thought it made sense fiscally. But we remember that when it gets expensive is when it matters most. So, there's an opportunity here. We'll be watching it.

Congressman Schiff, you're always welcome to argue the state of play of getting things done here.

SCHIFF: Thank you.

CUOMO: All right.


Got a BOLO, and this is a real BOLO, tonight. You got to Be On the Look-Out, you know why? Because there is a big cat down south that's looking to eat people. Is that true? I've got the latest on this situation. That is a real tiger. Is it a real threat? Next.








CUOMO: This is a real BOLO. Be On the Look-Out for a missing tiger in Texas. Nobody knows where it is. In fact, it keeps getting weirder.

Nine-month-old India has been missing since Sunday. He was spotted roaming a Houston neighborhood by neighbors, who called Police.

By the time the cops arrived, the tiger's caretaker drove off with the cat in a white SUV. That man is 26-year-old Victor Cuevas. He was arrested Monday night, posted bond in this case today.

So where's the cat? All we know of him is that he is a murder suspect. Not the cat. The care-keeper. He's out, suspect - you know, suspected. But he's out on bond in a 2017 killing. But we still don't know where he drove off with the tiger.


The big cat expert and "Tiger King" star, Carole Baskin weighed in.


CAROLE BASKIN, CEO, BIG CAT RESCUE: I am extremely worried about what happens with this tiger and the people around it.

That cat was laying around in the front yard, looking for what it could get into. And I had heard that there was a children's birthday party in the neighborhood. Children running, and screaming, and having fun, that would have triggered every instinct in that cat to kill.


CUOMO: So, the guy gets out of jail, and then people see him with the cat again. So, doesn't he have to have the cat?

Officials say they don't know where the tiger is. There's no evidence he's been roaming around or left the Houston area. That's good. But where is it? You found the guy one time. Find him again. See if he has the tiger. And then we don't have to be on BOLO, because that is never good to see in your neighborhood.

We'll be right back.







CUOMO: I hope you will want to join in on this new way of looking at things. You just squash the noise. You ignore the game. Because that's the only way you get to a different place. You cannot depend on the people, playing the game, to change it. It's not how the game works.

That's it for us tonight. "CNN TONIGHT" with D. Lemon, the big show, and the big star. If any man can find that tiger, it's him.