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FBI Releases New Videos Of Assaults On Officers At Capitol Six Months To The Day After Attack; Britney Spears' Attorney Petitions To Resign Amid Conservatorship Battle; Juul Fights To Keep Selling U.S. E-Cigs As FDA Weighs Action. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired July 06, 2021 - 21:00   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: That's it for us. The news continues. Want to hand her over to Chris for "CUOMO PRIME TIME." Chris.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: That situation stinks, stinks for her, but it stinks for the country to have arguably you're best not on the team for something that's not a performance enhancing drug.


Rules matter, standards matter. But there's supposed to be some type of balance and subjectivity. I'm actually surprised that this country, and its leadership, in that arena of Olympic sports, has been as quiet as it has, in defense of her.

Anderson, appreciate you reporting it, as always.

I am Chris Cuomo. Welcome to PRIME TIME.

We just celebrated the birth of our nation. We're all about being free. We are about independence, and it is beautiful, and it is a big part of what makes America beautiful.

And as an extension of that pride, there should be a nod to the profound sense of purpose that the American experiment requires. This is hard work. And in this country, we have to learn to choose our hard now. It's hard to do things the right way. It's hard to doing the wrong way.

Look, that Sha'Carri Richardson story speaks to this. She broke the rules. She admits she broke the rule. Isn't that the end of it? Are all rules equal? Who really loses here? Is weed a performance- enhancing drug? I think it's something you got to think about.

And you got to pick which fights to take. And I'm picking a fight tonight. I must remind you tonight that we are marking 6 months since January 6th.

I know a lot of you are going to roll your eyes. Do me a favor, roll them, but keep them open, all right? Because on that day, many who celebrated this weekend saying they love this country tried to destroy it. Please keep your eyes open.

The FBI released new evidence to capture some of the worst of the worst, who are still at large. Do we care about that anymore? Do we care about people that the federal authorities say committed terroristic acts and they can't find them? Do we care? Because we used to care about that more than anything else!

There are 11 of the most violent offenders from that day, part of a Trump mob, and that's what they were, and they've yet to be identified.

Watch what they were doing. Watch them assaulting officers.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bro? Chill bro. Chill bro.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is our house.





CUOMO: It's interesting to me how many people are saying, "I wish, I wish the video could be slowed down, so I could see it better," and then they'll dismiss that January 6th was a big deal right afterwards.

Why do you want to see the video any clear, if you're not willing to accept the reality that is painfully obvious already? What good is it to have a mouth that says "Blue Lives Matter!" if you're going to have hands and feet that do this?

Around 140 officers assaulted, some, very badly. This is the truth. Period! It is no less the truth, because "Black Lives Matters" supporters committed acts of violence too. Even if you want to believe that the media was OK with what they did, which sure as hell isn't true on this show, but even if you want to say they were, it doesn't change this.

And be clear. What happened on January 6th has no equal in terms of what and who was targeted, and how. And you know it. These are not tourists. They are terrorists. The FBI said it, not some partisan hack.

Take a look. Do these look like the best among us? Patriots? Just be straight. Forget the Left and Right. Just be reasonable. If these people were Brown, every Trumper would condemn them. The Right side of the aisle would still be talking about nothing else.

Trying to break into the United States Capitol to attack Congress and the Vice President? And remember, what were among the last words they heard? These.


DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're going to have to fight much harder. And Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us.


CUOMO: Was never fair to Pence, by the way. He had a ministerial duty. He was never going to change the outcome. And Trump knew that.

This weekend, the disgraced ex-president himself, told you exactly how he helped hurt us, while rambling about nonsense. Listen.


TRUMP: There's a word, disinformation. It's called disinformation. If you say it enough, and keep saying it, just keep saying it, they'll start to believe you.


CUOMO: You are "They." You are "They." That's what he does, and did.


Yes, others do it too. Yes, you can fear radical liberalism, feel that wokeness, cancel culture, are being weaponized against you, as White people, and that it's unfair. You can believe that.

But what legitimacy is there to your belief, if you cannot admit that Trump inciting followers, to fight back, and go to the Capitol, and then they went and did that, and tried to break in? If you can't own that, well where is your intellectual honesty? Where is the integrity of anything that you want to hold as true?

This was the worst of all of it. You're not going to find a protest that turned into a riot, where they attacked Congress, and did these kinds of things, to this many cops. So, why would you believe that?

Trump just told you, again, that he knows that if he lies enough, many will fall hook, line, and sinker. And they did.

One accused Capitol rioter admitted it just that to us, on this show.


ANTHONY ANTONIO, ACCUSED CAPITOL RIOTER: I honestly put a man above Jesus Christ, as my Lord and Savior. I believed a man. I believed what was being told to me. He was the President of our United States.


CUOMO: You guys - you guys said after this - that interview to me, "What an idiot! He's not even a real Christian." Save the judgment! But don't spare yourself the analysis of why - he wants to keep himself out of jail. Yes, of course. But do you know how many are saying the same thing?

What does it mean to you of those who are supposedly the most devout are now saying that the man was a deceiver? "Oh they're only doing it to help themselves." Well, why were they believing it in the first place?

You don't think that was just about helping themselves, rationalizing their own anger and frustration, blaming somebody else for their own problems? But you are OK with that part.

So now you have only one member of what must be called the Party of Trump. It's about nothing else. Only one who's of course, out of favor, because she's not enough about Trump, joining Democrats, to look in what led to this disgrace. What hope does that lead leave us for any kind of closure?

Let's bring in a better mind, House Oversight Committee, Democratic congresswoman Stacey Plaskett, former Trump impeachment manager for round two.

Welcome back to the show. None of this is new, what the state of play is. And yet, you move forward anyway, because?

DEL. STACEY PLASKETT (D-VI): Because the truth matters, because our country matters, and therefore we must protect it. And part of that protection is accountability and justice.

And so, without the support of the Republicans, we have to have a select committee that is going to look into not just who, but the how, and the why, and with what methods they tried to bring down this country, on January 6.

And those that will stand with us are the true patriots, and are the ones who believe that Blue Lives as well as all lives matter.

CUOMO: Counterpoint. The DOJ is already doing that. Congressional bodies can do it within the existing community - committees, that this special committee--


CUOMO: --is a nod to you not trusting those other institutions, and wanting to politicize this.

PLASKETT: Oh, that's not it at all. Remember that this was an attack on the Congress. This was an attack on our House.

And who are we, as members of the House, if we do not try and protect our house, if we do not utilize the power that is invested in us, the responsibility that we have, to ensure that individuals, who not only attacked the Capitol, but attacked our democratic institution, and our democratic process, are brought to justice?

The Justice Department is going after individuals, and their mandate is to criminally hold them liable. Our mandate is much broader than that.

Our mandate is to ensure that this does not happen again. And we cannot do that through various committees that are each doing hearings, in their respective. We have got to bring all of that as a whole.


And we tried to do it with Republicans, in a bipartisan manner, and make sure that the report was done, well before the election, so that it would not have the taint of politic - of politics in it. And the Republicans didn't want to do that.

These are also the individuals, who didn't want to beef up the Capitol Police, in the last augmentation of our appropriations. These are the individuals, who did not even want to vote to give the medal, a Congressional Medal, to those officers who protected them.

These are individuals who not only Chris, are concerned - are not concerned because it was not Black and Brown lives who did it, but are also not concerned because they are the Party of Trump. And if President Trump, the former president, is not in favor of it, they are not in favor of it.

They are holding a man above country. They are holding a man above their supposed belief that the police are important to us.

How do they sit in the chamber, many of them, like Kevin McCarthy, having security details made up a Capitol Police officers that are protecting him, on a daily basis, 24 hours a day, and do not believe in supporting them, either through an appropriation, to ensure that they have the right equipment and right number, but also don't believe that they should receive the Congressional Medal of Honor? That's a shame on him that he has those individuals protecting him, and he can't protect them.

CUOMO: I hear the arguments. And I think that it is regrettable that that party has ceded its authority and its agency to Trump.

Because you guys need strong conservative counters. You need a battle of ideas. And you need to be pushed to a point of compromise that makes sense, for the greatest number of people. And you don't have it now. So, that's a problem for all of us. The question is, are you making it any better?

Your blame is laid at the right set of feet. They're not going to give you bipartisanship on this. So, how can you hope to do anything more than preach to the converted with anything you come up with? And how do you expect to do anything to hold anyone to account, just as a political body?

PLASKETT: Well, we have the power of subpoena. We have the power to bring this to hearings.

I have full confidence in the members, and Bennie Thompson, who is going to be chairing this. He has been masterful in Homeland Security, since its creation, along with the other - my other colleagues that are going to be there.

And they are going to bring a report that will bring accountability that will make recommendations to not only support the institution of Congress and Capitol Police, but other institutions.

It may be that we need more support in our FBI, it may be that there are issues within the Department of Justices, or in other Intelligence agencies that we have a responsibility to be accountable to, and to review and have oversight over. And they're going to make sure that that's done.

And that's the purpose of having this select committee is not only to bring accountability to Trump, and to those individuals who did this, but to bring accountability to our institutions that allowed this to happen.

CUOMO: You really think there's a chance?

PLASKETT: Well at the same time, Chris, we're - go on, I'm sorry.

CUOMO: Say what you're going to say. But you know my question. Do you really believe that there is an existing threat that something like this could happen again?

PLASKETT: Well, we see it. I'm sure that the threats are continuing. There are threats on individual members. There are threats on institutions.

We have wackos within the Trump organization, and within his cadre of sycophants, who are continuing to try, and rally the troops, to come back to the Capitol, to continue to wreak mayhem on our democratic institutions, talking about Trump, coming back into office, during the August.

While we're trying, as I was going to say, to do the people's business, to work out a bipartisanship, in an agreement on infrastructure that our President has brought forward, President Biden, to work on jobs, to work on wealth creation, in African American communities, and other places, to ensure that we have the support, so that women can go back to work, who have lost so much during the COVID pandemic.

Those are the things that Democrats and those of us who want to work in a bipartisan manner are attempting to do, while at the same time, protecting our voting rights, ensuring that a police - justice and police reform takes place.

We have to, at the same time, make sure that the Capitol and our democratic institutions hold fast during this time.

CUOMO: I appreciate you, Representative, making the case, on CUOMO PRIME TIME. Thank you for joining us, Stacey Plaskett.

PLASKETT: Thank you for bringing this up. Thank you for not letting us forget.

CUOMO: All right. Be well. You're always welcome.


Speaking of never forget, still doesn't make any sense to me. I don't understand this conservatorship thing with Britney Spears. And I'm talking to all these experts, in that area of law, and trying to find other examples, to bring it up to you, for it to make more sense. And I can't. I've never seen a case like this.

This celebrity, but adult individual, is good enough to perform, knock us all off our socks, where everybody, sees her shows are like "I can't believe it! Good!" but she can't run her own life. Legally, she's not allowed to do that, even though legally she can go out and work, and wow crowds, but somehow that's something different? What is she, a dolphin?

A key member of her team is asking to quit, along with a key figure, in her fight for independence. Why? Let's talk to her former lawyer, next.








CUOMO: #FreeBritney movement is in limbo tonight, why?


Her court-appointed attorney, Sam Ingham, submitted a petition to resign. Comes just two weeks after the pop star's bombshell testimony, in which she called the nearly 13-year conservatorship, "Abusive," and asked for it to be terminated.

Ingham notably, did not file any paperwork to that end. But his resignation is just the latest within Spears' circle. Also Larry Rudolph, manager of 25 years, resigned today, citing Spears' intent to retire.

Last week, Bessemer Trust, the wealth management firm that was ordered to oversee Spears' $60 million estate, alongside her father, Jamie, stepped down as well, citing Spears' desire to end the arrangement.

What can we glean from these resignations? What does it mean, for this as a legal situation? Adam Streisand, Britney Spears' former attorney did not resign under similar circumstances, by the way.

Welcome to PRIME TIME.

What do you make of these? And by the way, are they to be seen the same way? Let's start with the money guys. That one seems to be different than the manager and the lawyer. But how do you see it?

ADAM STREISAND, BRITNEY SPEARS' FORMER ATTORNEY: Well, I see it as a lot of people made a lot of money off of Britney over many years.

But now, people are worried about the reputations, right? I mean, Bessemer doesn't want to be a co-conservator, because what financial institution wants its slogan to be "Trust us. We'll take over your life against your will," right? That's not a good look. And her manager as well.

But they're dropping like flies now, finally, after Britney has had an opportunity to talk to us directly, about what's been going on.

CUOMO: So, why would the manager drop? And why would the lawyer drop without - and what - without advocating for her own case?

STREISAND: Well, let's talk about - let's talk about the lawyer for a second. OK. Despite a litany of troubling questions about Sam Ingham's involvement, he now is finally resigning, reportedly, because he's upset about what Britney said about him.

And reportedly, he's contradicting Britney's testimony and saying, well, he told her that she had the opportunity to seek termination, and she ignored his advice. OK, I have two things to say about that.

First, how does TMZ know what Sam Ingham and Britney Spears spoke to in private? In this country, we have an attorney-client privilege. And it applies, even if your feelings get hurt, about what your client says. OK.

And the second thing is we're now supposed to believe that it was Britney's fault that it was Britney's choice to ignore her lawyer's advice? And isn't that inconsistent with what Sam Ingham told the judge just 8 months ago that Britney is like a comatose patient, and can't even say what she thinks or wants.


CUOMO: And how does she perform?

STREISAND: And how does she perform? And she has this - conservatorships are supposed to be for people who can't function in life.

CUOMO: Right.

STREISAND: How is it possible that she is able to function so well, onstage, on tour, make millions of dollars, for all of these people, and somehow she needs a conservatorship? I mean, the--

CUOMO: So, what are we missing? Because now you got Jamie Spears, the father, asking the court to investigate Britney's claims, which is very weird. It's a great delay tactic, by the way, especially when he's not going to pay for any of that. The Estate will.

Either, the allegations will be shown to be true, in which case corrective action must be taken, or they will be shown to be false, in which case the conservatorship can continue its course. It's not acceptable for the conservators or the court to do nothing, in response to Ms. Spears' testimony.

How crazy is it, when the guy that she's going after--


CUOMO: --is the only one, who wants the situation to be litigated?

STREISAND: Right. Well, it is weird. And if Jamie wants to do her daughter a favor, he ought to resign. It's long overdue. He should never have been put in place in the first place.

Chris, thousands of people could have been made the conservator. You didn't need to have to have her father, or as her lawyer calls her - calls Jamie, "Daddy," Jamie's lawyer calls "Daddy."

Conservatorships are supposed to protect people, who are vulnerable. Why would you choose somebody to be conservator, who makes the conservatee feel even more vulnerable?

This conservatorship was supposedly justified because there were men, who were manipulating Britney. So we needed a conservatorship, I guess, to allow different men to manipulate and control her. I mean, the real tragedy in Britney's life is that we adultified her as a child, and we need to stop infantilizing her as an adult.

CUOMO: I get it. Look, I don't see the gender play here so much. Putting the father in charge is something that sometimes happens.

But there's a bigger problem here, and I still don't understand it. Now, anything you can figure out about it, please give us a call. I'll have you back to discuss.


I don't understand why this judge isn't engaging in what always happens in these situations, based on my research, which is this bona fide fight, over the competency of the individual involved. That's what happens in every one of these other cases that I can find.

It's not her dad saying, "Yes, let's look into it." It's "Who's your doctor? Who's my doctor? And let's talk about who I am and what kind of shape I'm in." And it's not happening here. And that's weird.

Adam Streisand, thank you for the insight. Appreciate it.

STREISAND: You're welcome.

CUOMO: All right, now, I want to take you inside the game. I really believe that this is going to pay off for you guys, if you pay attention. Probably won't rate but that doesn't matter. Some things just have to resonate. Some things just matter.

This talk of isolating the game is everything, because it's why you hate politics, OK? It's why you hate what they do. And there are far few, there are a few, who spew more than Senator Ron Johnson.

We just got our hands on new proof to show you that he knows he's playing the game. Next.









CUOMO: Breaking News, Elsa is strengthening once again, back to a Cat 1 hurricane. That means 75 miles plus in wind that is sustained. It is moving parallel to the West Coast of Florida. Cat 1 is plenty strong enough to do damage. It's expected to make landfall tomorrow morning in the state's Big Bend region.

We're seeing storms like Elsa, too frequently. This is the earliest we have ever had this many named storms, again. That's why we need to call out garbage in the form of the game, the target tonight, Wisconsin Republican, Senator Ron Johnson.

To CNN and his local paper, he says stuff like "My statements are consistent. I'm not a climate change denier."

Then, our KFILE team finds this, when he's back home, at a Republican women's lunch. You know, when you speak the truth?


SEN. RON JOHNSON (R-WI): I don't know about you guys. I think climate change is, as Lord Monckton said, Bull (BLEEP).


JOHNSON: And by the way, it is.


CUOMO: Sounds like a denier, no? Just a month ago!

Climate change, it doesn't have a chance, when a pandemic can be ignored, and January 6th could be called a group of terrorists by this same guy?

Now, many see Johnson as just selling stupid. I see something worse. I know this guy. I remember him when he came to the Senate, a businessman, and he said "I don't know anything about this politics. I'm just here to make things happen, just to make deals, find progress."

He wanted to come on my show, and show economic theories and principles, and do charts, to justify policies. Now he's this? This is how he responds to a heat wave gripping North America, almost 100 dead in Oregon?

It is obvious what he's doing wrong, he keeps doing it, because that's the game. Whether it was in 2010, when he said "I absolutely do not believe in the science of man-caused climate change," or when he's repeatedly tried to play dumb while suggesting that Greenland's name is enough to dismiss the climate crisis, he's saying it because it works, because that's what the game does, as long as you're willing to dumb down and divide.

Six in 10 Americans know that global warming is already happening. And that's what half the aisle trying to get you to deny science like they did with the pandemic. Republicans, the number is half that. This is the problem with the game. Half?

Johnson knows the more you see the blue line on something like this go up, the more he's happy to stand in opposition. Never mind his home state is facing far-ranging consequences for the state's major economic sectors due to what? The reality of climate change.

I bet you, if Congress serves up money, to help states like that, Johnson's going to want some. Well, I thought it didn't exist! That's the game. If he cared about serving the people of his state, he'd care about how many times he's been caught talking out of both sides of his mouth.

There's no shame in that game, though, right? Hypocrisy is fine, as long as it gets you where you want to be. It's the game. Make it stop.

Now, Johnson also insists that the Capitol attack was not an armed insurrection that they didn't have enough weapons. "They stayed within the rope lines." We just showed you the new video. He knows his BS on this, but it doesn't matter because it works.

So, what does a key Democrat make of the ongoing mockery of January 6? The House Majority Whip, what is accountability? What needs to happen? Next.









CUOMO: 6 months to the day, and we are as in a bad spot, a bad spot, as on January 6th itself.

While the Party of Trump wants you to think that what the FBI called a terror attack was really nothing, it is likely more that January 6th represents everything about why our Congress and our country are suffering hard times.

Let's discuss with House Majority Whip Democrat James Clyburn.

Congressman, good to have you. Thank you, sir.

REP. JAMES CLYBURN (D-SC): Thank you very much for having me.

CUOMO: So, I was speaking earlier with Representative Plaskett, about the point of this commission. If you don't have bipartisan buy-in, what do you hope to achieve that will get you to any kind of consensus on this?

CLYBURN: Well, having these discussions in the Congress is very, very important.

We know what happened on January 6. We now have a committee that's been established by the Speaker. She's picked eight outstanding people to carry out this investigation.

I would hope that the Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy will appoint the five, and then let's get to finding out who and why. We know what. And we know where. We need to find out who and why.


So, I'd think it is bipartisan already. Nobody can deny that the Republican that Nancy Pelosi has put on there is anything but a Republican. So, it is bipartisan. If Kevin doesn't participate, let's go forward with these eight, and see can we get to the bottom of it.

CUOMO: Problem is we're stuck in a time, where people pretend that the truth is what they want it to be. January 6th is an egregious example of it, because we all saw, heard and felt the same things.

It gets trickier, with your other big battle, which is voting rights.

You said something that had my radio audience on fire today. "Jim Clyburn says nobody in the Democratic Party is against voter ID. He's always been OK with voter ID. It's just what the standard is that is his issue." And all the callers wanted to talk about it today.

Make the case in light of this criticism. "No, no, no, the Democrats say they don't like voter ID, that it's disproportionately a suppressive device and a chilling effect on people, who live in big areas, and take mass transit, and don't want to go to the DMV, or don't have the time or the access to go." And that's what the response usually is.

You say, "No, we're fine with it," with a "But." What's your case?

CLYBURN: As long as the voter ID is an ID that everybody has access to, and one of those things have to be the voter registration card. When I went to register the vote, I got a card. I keep it in my wallet. You might not be able to read it, because I've had it there so long. Every time I go vote, I present my ID.

Now, this has always been. The problem was when they started saying you got to have a photo ID, and a photo from a hunting license is OK, but a photo from a student activity card, is not OK. That's a bunch of junk. That's what we're against.

We aren't against IDing yourself. And so, when Joe Manchin came forward with voter ID, and has said using things, like people's utility bills, and that sort of thing, to determine who they are, that's all right.

But when you start telling me that I've got to have a photo ID, I don't drive anymore, I don't have a driver's license, and I got to have some kind of government-sponsored ID, and you make me pay for it, that's a problem. And we've always been against that. We have never been against IDing yourself when you go vote.

CUOMO: Congressman?

CLYBURN: No - yes?

CUOMO: Congressman, you know what this is about. This is about them getting more them - them getting more of theirs and less of yours.

You got to forgive me. I got the COVID tongue. Sometimes the brain moves faster than my mouth can.

That's what this is about. It's about maximizing their number and minimizing your number. And everybody knows it. And they'll say, "Oh, well, hunting licenses are state IDs. And that's why they're OK. And school IDs aren't." That's beside the point.

Why isn't the fix, this? When you go to the polls, and you show up, and you say, "I am handsome Congressman Jim Clyburn," they take a picture of you, and it goes into the database with you, as Jim Clyburn, and then it's there every time you come to vote? And you don't have to present anything. You're already in the system.

CLYBURN: Yes, that's true. Here, in South Carolina, what we did was you go and you get a photo ID, as your voter registration card. So, we register voting in the machine (ph), take the picture right there and it's on your card. Nobody's got a problem with that.

CUOMO: So, why don't you just do that in every state, make that federal law?

CLYBURN: Well I think that--

CUOMO: Give them the money to do it?

CLYBURN: Well, I think that that's one way for reconciliation to work. If we put that into the bill, then you have to start spending money, then reconciliation can apply to the budget. And maybe that's the way to go.

But to be serious about it, so long as the ID is standard for everybody, we don't have a problem with it. But don't give me something different that you give the other guy.

CUOMO: You think you got any chance of getting this done?

CLYBURN: Yes, I do.


CLYBURN: I really believe that we are going to pass S.1, which went over as H.R.1. And I really believe that S.1 will incorporate the things that we think were important in the John Lewis Voter Education and Advancement Act. That's what we want to see happen. S.1 should be - should incorporate the John Lewis, which is H.R.4.

CUOMO: Well, we'll be watching it. It certainly matters.

And I wasn't kidding. I think that's the great fix. Just have them do it, when you show up at the polls, put the money from it - put the money into that, and then everybody's happy. There's your ID.


Congressman Jim Clyburn, thank you very much for making the case. Be well.

CLYBURN: Thank you very much.

CUOMO: All right, God bless.

To the war against vaping, we're sleeping on vaping again, you notice that? You got kids? That's why I started talking to you about this, all right? I got it in my home, all right? Everybody's kid is susceptible to this.

So - and they knew what they were doing. They were saying that vape will make people stop smoking. That works for some adults. It's had the opposite effect with kids. They're vaping like crazy, and everybody knows it. So could have made your e-cigarette maker be put out of business soon in America, because of this?

We're going to talk to a parent, of a teen, who is recovering, from vaping addiction. And let me tell you something. I know her. She's a good parent. This happens to all kinds of people everywhere. Now she wants to raise awareness. It is still a crisis, even though it's not in the headlines. Next.









CUOMO: It's been three years since the FDA declared youth vaping an epidemic. The agency now has a hefty decision on its plate. Should Juul, the most well-known vaping company in the U.S., be allowed to continue selling its e-cigarettes? The company - e-cigs, they're called.

The company after all did agree to pay the State of North Carolina $40 million, to settle a lawsuit that was complaining, the company marketed its products to kids and misled us about the risks. That's just one of thousands of suits lodged against the company.

Juul, for its part, did not admit intentionally targeting youth. The company and its defenders, like Greg Conley, the President of the American Vaping Association, make this argument.


GREGORY CONLEY, AMERICAN VAPING ASSOCIATION PRESIDENT: If you ban flavors, you're going to increase smoking. And the most popular flavors among adults, contrary to a lot of the rhetoric, are sweet and fruits.

CUOMO: Your argument is our kids--

CONLEY: So, we should come to a solution.

CUOMO: --will smoke unless they vape? That's what you're trying to say?

CONLEY: We don't want any youth to vape. But the reality is youth experiment. We just saw from 2018 to 2019, the largest decrease in teen smoking that we've ever seen, about a 28 percent decline.

CUOMO: Yes. But the question is, is what they're doing now, killing them because what goes into your devices--

CONLEY: They--

CUOMO: --is causing a lot of problems around this country. And how do you not have--

CONLEY: Excuse me.

CUOMO: --responsibility for that?


CUOMO: Look, here's the answer to the question. They are responsible. And too many kids are drawn to vaping by marketing and peer pressure, as much or more than cigarettes today. Ask a parent who pays attention.

Dorian Fuhrman is the Co-Founder of PAVe, Parents Against Vaping e- cigarettes.

It's good to have you on PRIME TIME.


CUOMO: We saw each other this weekend. I told Dorian, I would cover it.


CUOMO: And here we are. Because it still matters, it's not in the headlines.

FUHRMAN: Here we are.

CUOMO: Shame on us. But the problem continues. The idea that we have moved past this, what have you learned, in your advocacy work, about what's happening today with kids and vaping?

FUHRMAN: We haven't moved past this. I think it's a problem because we're not talking about it.

Juul created the youth vaping epidemic. They did not launch their e- cigarette device to help adults quit smoking. They created a sexy new nicotine delivery system, and the kids flocked to it, about five years ago.

And this is personal for me. My son was introduced to Juul in the summer before ninth grade.

But what really got us started was when we discovered that Juul had sent a representative, into our kid's ninth grade class, under the guise of an alcohol and drug anti-addiction talk, and proceeded to tell the kids, without the school's knowledge, that Juul was totally safe and about to get FDA approval.

And the issue is that today there are almost 4 million kids, who are vaping in this country, and we're not doing anything about it. And at the same time, the FDA is considering authorizing flavored e-cigarette products. It's just unacceptable. We can't let that happen. CUOMO: Their pushback is that it does help people get off cigarettes, and that it's not been connected to the same kind of health risks yet. What do you say?

FUHRMAN: Well, you know what? There's no proof to that.

And let's be clear. Juul is Big Tobacco. And Big Tobacco is Juul. They are owned now, in part by Altria, which is Philip Morris and Marlboro. And they are up to the old tricks of Big Tobacco.

They paid to have a peer-reviewed journal of their own paid research, published and open, you know, no, no subscription necessary, so that everyone could see that Juul was helpful for smokers.

But this is - this is paid research. It's what Big Tobacco used to do in the 50s, when they paid doctors, to tell their patients that they should smoke cigarettes.

So, there is no proof that it helps adult smokers quit smoking. But there is proof that kids are addicted to flavors. And we represent the millions of parents, around this country, who are dealing with this vaping epidemic, in their homes, firsthand.

CUOMO: Here's what Juul says about the settlement. And I'll give you a chance to respond to it.

You're going to put it up? Good.

"This settlement is consistent with our ongoing effort to reset our company... as we continue to combat underage usage and advance the opportunity for harm reduction for adult smokers.

We seek to continue to earn trust through action. For example, we ceased the distribution of our non-tobacco, non-menthol flavored products in advance of FDA guidance and halted all mass market product advertising."

How do you view this stated change in course, to right their ways?


FUHRMAN: You know what? They haven't really changed course. The most popular flavor among teens today is menthol. And they have left their Menthol Pod on the market, and they are applying for FDA approval for that Menthol Pod.

Over 40 percent - 40 percent of kids are vaping menthol, and dozens percentage more are vaping iced flavors, the iced candy, which aren't Juul, but they're iced and they're mentholated.

The FDA made an incredible announcement in April that they were going to start the rule-making process to end the sale of menthol cigarettes, because menthol is incredibly toxic and incredibly addictive. For that same reason, they should not approve any menthol e-cigarette products, because menthol is toxic, and menthol amplifies the impact of nicotine, in the product. And is - we have a whole generation of kids, would have never vaped, they would have never smoked cigarettes. And now, we have a generation of nicotine addicts.

CUOMO: And the health effects of it are real and palpable. And you can find them online.

Dorian Fuhrman, thank you for the advocacy.


CUOMO: Appreciate you being with us.

FUHRMAN: Thank you.

And come to, and join us, and fight back.

CUOMO: We'll be right back.