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Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees
January 6 Committee Subpoenas Trump White House Counsel, Pat Cipollone; Interview With Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA); Wisconsin Democrats Eye Vulnerable Sen. Ron Johnson; Justice Dept. Charges Four People, Including Driver, In Death Of 53 Migrants In San Antonio; Woman Traveled To Colorado To Get Abortion; Doctor Worries After Roe Reversal It Could Be Harder To Go To Other States For Procedure. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired June 29, 2022 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOVANTE CUNNINGHAM, R. KELLY SURVIVOR: Thirty years did he do this and 30 years is what he got.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
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AC 360 begins now.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening.
There is Breaking News tonight: The House January 6 Committee a short time ago issuing a subpoena to former White House Counsel, Pat Cipollone. In a moment, we'll be joined by California Congresswoman and Committee member, Zoe Lofgren.
Cipollone, as you know, was a prominent part of Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony yesterday before the Committee. He repeatedly warned White House officials of the legal danger they and the President recording, but he has so far refused to testify. So, of course, as former White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows despite having already been subpoenaed, and then cited for contempt of Congress for refusing to appear and he is a former Congressman himself.
Meadows was one of the former President's closest advisers in the run up to the January 6th insurrection, privy to nearly every major decision leading up to and during that day. According to the testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson, his top aide, Meadows appears to have been at the center of the scheme to overturn the election yet, almost willfully remote from the consequences as it all came unraveled.
Twenty-six-year-old Cassidy Hutchinson was brave enough patriotic enough to come forward. Sixty-two-year-old Mark Meadows is not. Just as a refresher, here are some of what we learned from Miss
Hutchinson about Mr. Meadows, some of what the Committee would presumably want to ask him about if he had the courage or decency to talk.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CASSIDY HUTCHINSON, FORMER AIDE TO MARK MEADOWS: I remember leaning against the doorway and saying, "He has had an interesting conversation with Rudy, Mark. It sounds like we're going to go to the Capitol." He didn't look up from his phone and said something to the effect of, there's a lot going on, guys. But I don't know. Things might get real, real bad on January 6.
REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): Do you know if Mr. Meadows ever intended to go to the Willard Hotel on the night of the fifth?
HUTCHINSON: I had made it clear to Mr. Meadows that I didn't believe it was a smart idea for him to go to the Willard Hotel that night.
QUESTION: What was Mark's reactions -- Meadow's reaction to this list of weapons that people had in the crowd?
HUTCHINSON: I remember distinctly Mark not looking up from his phone. I remember, Tony finishing his explanation and taking a few seconds for Mark to say something to the point where I almost said, "Mark, do you hear him?" And then Mark chimed in and was like, "All right. Anything else?" Still looking down at his phone.
CHENEY: When you finally were able to give Mr. Meadows the information about the violence at the Capitol, what was his reaction?
HUTCHINSON: He almost had a lack of reaction.
And I remember Pat saying to him, something to the effect of, the rioters have gotten to the Capitol, Mark. We need to go down and see the President now. And Mark looked up at him and said, "He doesn't want to do anything, Pat." And Pat said something to the effect of and very clearly had said this to Mark something to the effect of, Mark, something needs to be done or people are going to die and the blood is going to be on your effing hands.
CHENEY: Did White House Chief of Staff, Mark Meadows ever indicate that he was interested in receiving a presidential pardon related to January 6th?
HUTCHINSON: Mr. Meadows did seek that pardon, yes, ma'am.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: "Mr. Meadows did seek that pardon," she said. We invited Mr. Meadows to come on the program, got no reply. We invited his lawyer to come on the program or give us a statement, got no reply. Same goes for Pat Cipollone. The Pat you've heard referred to in the testimony, who is now under subpoena to appear before the Committee. Cipollone, you'll recall is consistently portrayed in testimonies
counseling against nearly every potentially bad act now under scrutiny. From Mark Meadows to the former President going to the Capitol to the inflammatory content in his speech, to his refusal to call off the rioters.
Cassidy Hutchinson testified Cipollone told her that if she could not prevent the former President from going to the Capitol, "We're going to get charged with every crime imaginable."
The former President as we would learn yesterday, certainly wanting to go to the Capitol and was furious when told he could not go. Both the Secret Service and former White House staffer Tony Ornato have since disputed Miss Hutchinson's account of being told she says by Mr. Ornato that the former President grabbed at the steering wheel and lunged and Secret Service detail, Chief Robert Engel, who was not asked about this during prior testimony. The agency is saying it will make the agents in question available to testify under oath.
Meantime, attorneys for Cassidy Hutchinson provided CNN a statement, which reads in part: "Miss Hutchinson stands by all of the testimony she provided yesterday under oath to the Select Committee."
As for Mark Meadows and Pat Cipollone, nothing yet.
One final note about Meadows though, remember, the former President's so-called Election Defense Fund that he said was set up to "protect election integrity." The one that we later learned didn't actually exist, but still got people to donate around a quarter billion dollars that instead made its way to a Trump fundraising PAC.
COOPER: Well, CNN has learned that less than a month after the January 6 Select Committee was formed, the Trump PAC made a million dollar donation to a group called the Conservative Partnership Institute and you might be curious to know who a senior partner in that group is, one, Mark Meadows.
Yesterday, Committee Vice Chair Liz Cheney detailed two instances of what appeared to be witness tampering through intimidation. If true, perhaps it's not the only way that someone is trying to influence who says what before the January 6 Committee.
Joining us now, CNN's Ryan Nobles with more on the Cipollone subpoena. What do we know about this, Ryan?
RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it seems pretty clear, Anderson, that the Committee no longer wants to wait around for Pat Cipollone to voluntarily comply with their investigation and learn more about exactly what he knew about the time leading up to and on January 6th.
They make it clear in their letter to Cipollone that they are willing to talk to him about ways of dealing with privilege claims that he may have and there is no doubt some privilege claims because he was a member of the White House Counsel's Office. He was the Chief Counsel in that office and somebody that was advising the President and the Office of the Presidency on a number of legal matters.
But it's clear that the Committee believes that his testimony outweighs any of those concerns, and that certainly came through in the testimony from Cassidy Hutchinson because Cipollone's name came up time and time again as someone that was strongly advising the President and his top aides not to make and take some serious action that could put them in legal jeopardy and could potentially be dangerous. The most obvious example, of course, going to the Capitol on January 6th.
So Cipollone has long thought to be a key player in all of this, someone that was at the nexus of a lot of these decisions that were made in the Trump administration and within the campaign in the time between the election and January 6th and that's why the committee believes it is vital that they talk to him.
COOPER: Cipollone had an informal interview with the Committee back in April. Is it clear what that entailed, whether it was under oath, whether the Committee can disclose any of that publicly, regardless of whether he complies with the subpoena?
NOBLES: None of that is clear, frankly, Anderson. The Committee has not made it clear as to exactly what kind of conversation they had with Cipollone.
We are led to believe that it was really more informal, that he provided more background information that either corroborated or rolled back some of the testimony that they'd already heard, and we also know that that testimony happened, if you can even call it testimony -- that conversation is probably a better way to frame it -- happened months ago, long after they received a lot more information from a lot of different witnesses, including the multiple interviews that they conducted with Cassidy Hutchinson.
So that's why the Committee believes it is necessary for Cipollone not to hide behind anything anymore, that he needs to come in front of them under oath and testify to what he knows about this period of time, because they believe that he is one of the most important players in all of this conversation.
COOPER: Ryan Nobles, appreciate it.
Joining us now Committee member, California Democratic Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren.
Congresswoman, I appreciate you being here.
Do you have any indication that Mr. Cipollone would comply with this subpoena? Or do you think it's likely he'll fight in Court?
REP. ZOE LOFGREN (D-CA): Well, I hope that he does comply. We recognize that there could be some communication between him and the President that is legitimately privileged and we're willing to work through those. But clearly, if you look at Miss Hutchinson's testimony yesterday,
there were quite a few things that he could tell the Committee that would not be subject to privilege, and I think it's important.
I think he wants to make sure that the institution of the Office of Counsel is protected and I understand that and I actually even respect that.
But we can work through those issues. I think, it is very important that he come in and answer the Committee's questions, and I hope that he does.
COOPER: Were you planning to subpoena him anyway? Or is this a direct result of Miss Hutchinson's testimony yesterday?
LOFGREN: Well, I can't go into that, but obviously, we've been in discussion with him and his counsel for quite some time. He did have an informal discussion with our investigators, but we really have a need to move past that and I hope that he will respond.
COOPER: What do you think of Miss Hutchinson's -- I mean, is there something that you see as her most important revelation yesterday?
LOFGREN: Well, there was a lot, but the thing that struck me probably more than anything else, was when she overheard the President instructing that they should take the "effing mags away," that the people with weapons weren't going to hurt him and that they could march, by the way, with those weapons to the Capitol from the Ellipse.
Wow. I mean, that was a shock.
COOPER: The fact that according to her, the President knew that people in the crowd were armed, especially because later on he said, how, you know, they came with love and how he loved them. They were special people.
COOPER: The fact that he knew they were armed, and he was still encouraging them to march on the Capitol and claiming that he was going to go with them. What does that say to you? Is that evidence of a crime?
LOFGREN: Well, you know, I think it is very disturbing. Here was a crowd full of people, you know, some were unarmed, clearly, but there was a group of people who were armed with assault weapons.
He knew it, and he wanted them to march on the Capitol. He encouraged them to do it. Not only did he tell them to go fight, but he also said he was going to be with him. Now, as it turned out, that didn't occur, although clearly, he very much wanted to go to the Capitol himself.
COOPER: The Secret Service said today in a statement that the Committee didn't ask Secret Service witnesses to respond to Miss Hutchinson's testimony priority to yesterday's hearing. Given that the Committee knew what she was going to say, was it a mistake not to ask the Secret Service about it before she said it publicly?
LOFGREN: Well, she was under oath. And, you know, all she did was a recount a report that was given to her. She wasn't in the car. And she told us under oath that Mr. Ornato relayed the story to her with Mr. Engel present who did not deny it.
Now, you know, if the Secret Service wants to come in under oath and say that they didn't tell her that or what they told her was not true, that's fine. But it misses the main point, which is no one is denying that the President wanted to go up to the Capitol where this armed mob was attacking the Congress and trying to overturn the election. That is the main point.
Shocking as the story about the limousine lurch was, the real legal import is that he wanted to go up there and nobody is disputing that.
COOPER: Previously had Mr. Engel, or any other member of the detail or Tony Ornato testified before the Committee and had they been asked specifically about what happened on that morning --
LOFGREN: Well, I don't have a photographic memory from reading the transcripts and it has been a while now since I read Mr. Ornato's transcript and Mr. Engel's, but we didn't have all the information we have now. Those interviews took place quite some time ago. So we may need to take up with them.
COOPER: But wouldn't they have testified? I mean, I assume you would have asked them about what happened on January 6, given they were --
LOFGREN: Let me just say that what -- Miss Hutchinson, I thought gave compelling testimony under oath. We fully expected that loyalists to the President would try and undercut her, belittle her, try and disparage her and I think that is ongoing.
But you know, we'll put people under oath and see what they say then.
COOPER: So you want those two, Tony Ornato and Engel to testify before the Committee.
LOFGREN: I think she went under oath and stands by her testimony, which by the way, wasn't what happened, but what she was told. And, you know, we can -- if there's a dispute, we can put other people under oath. But the main point is this: No one is disputing that the then President wanted to go to the Capitol to be with the rioters. That's a pretty disturbing fact.
COOPER: Yes, to acknowledge, to be with rioters he knew were armed, which is just again, extraordinary. And according to Miss Hutchinson, he had said, well, they're not going to be violent against me, which is even just a naive, odd, I mean, bizarre comment, just a stupid comment to make, you know, who knows what armed people are going to do?
The message that is shown by Vice Chair Cheney at the end of yesterday's hearing, seemed to open the door to the potential for witness tampering. Is the committee in possession of more messages along those lines? Has that evidence been shared with the Justice Department?
LOFGREN: Well, let's just say we're concerned, as you know, in prior hearing, we talked about the hundreds of millions of dollars that the former President raised, some of that money is being used to pay for lawyers, for witnesses, and it's not clear that that arrangement is one that is without coercion potential for some of those witnesses.
LOFGREN: So let's just say this. It's a concern. And anyone who is trying to dissuade or tamper a witness should be on notice that that's a crime and we are perfectly prepared to provide any evidence we have to the proper authorities.
COOPER: Congresswoman Lofgren, I appreciate your time. Thank you.
LOFGREN: Thank you.
COOPER: Joining us now, CNN senior law enforcement analyst and former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe, and CNN legal analyst, Carrie Cordero.
Andrew, your reaction to the Committee's subpoena of Pat Cipollone. I mean, I think it's likely he would actually comply.
ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: I think it's highly unlikely that he'll comply. He should comply. There's plenty of conversations that we now know that Mr. Cipollone had with many people in and around the White House that did not include the President of the United States and therefore, would presumably not be privileged.
He clearly has relevant, important evidence to provide to the Committee. I think he should sit down and be interviewed under oath. But I would also assume that he is probably very focused on preserving the, you know, not becoming the White House Counsel who testified against his President, and that that's going to be a tough obstacle for him to overcome.
COOPER: Carrie, do government attorneys have any sort of ethical obligation to cooperate with an investigation, whether it be congressional or criminal? And maybe you could help explain the difference between White House Counsel and a personal attorney for the President?
CARRIE CORDERO, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Sure.
So you know, normally, a government attorney, if they are requested to comply with a congressional investigation would be in a position of trying to comply with that. But White House Counsel is a very unique position.
So the White House Counsel gives advice to the President in his capacity as President, he is there to preserve the office -- the institution of the presidency in part, and so that's completely different than someone who might be a personal lawyer to the individual who serves as President if they have separate legal exposure and need an outside lawyer.
So he was President Trump's lawyer. He was not Donald Trump's lawyer. And so he does have a responsibility to preserve the institution of that White House Counsel's Office.
Sometimes, an individual wants to receive a subpoena because then they can testify or provide information in a way that makes it appear that they are being compelled to do so and they are responding to lawful process. It seems more likely, I think, I agree with Andy that in this case, it's more likely that he will try to protect the prerogatives of that position and litigate it, in which case I don't understand why the Committee waited this long to issue the subpoena.
COOPER: Yes, Andrew, why do you think they did? I mean, is it just a coincidence that they did it the day after Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony?
MCCABE: You know, I think Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony made it perfectly obvious how relevant and important Cipollone's testimony would be, so, you know, subpoenaing him -- the fact that they haven't subpoenaed him before this, I think, you know, I totally agree with Carrie, it is an oversight on their part, but it was unavoidable now, you know, unavoidable today in the wake of yesterday's testimony.
Probably a pretty significant tactical error on their part, because as Carrie points out, he'll very easily be able to potentially be able to dodge appearing by litigating the issue and essentially timing out the Committee.
COOPER: Hey, Carrie, we are just literally right now getting new reporting that Pat Cipollone will probably agree to a transcribed interview with the January 6 Committee limited to specific topics to avoid the privilege issue, a lawyer familiar with Cipollone's thinking just told CNN. What do you make of that?
CORDERO: So that's very interesting. Okay, so that would align with the one possibility I mentioned, which is that he would have had a preference to receive a subpoena and be compelled, and then be in the position of saying, "I am going to respond to this important Congressional investigation," and then they can be in a position of negotiating the terms.
So for example, what you just described, they'll probably engage with the Committee and maybe they can come to some agreement where he testifies under oath, they'll determine whether it will be recorded versus a transcript, which has a different dynamic for him. We've seen how the Committee has used video testimony very effectively, but maybe he would prefer not to do that and have written testimony.
At this point, given the timing, I do think it's in the Committee's interest to get him on record for as much as they can in whatever way that they can as opposed to going down the path of litigating it.
COOPER: It's an interesting idea you mentioned, Carrie, the idea that he doesn't want -- might not want to be on video, if part of his thinking which, you know, he is, I guess, in private practice now and probably needs work from Republican, you know, from Trump world who wants to leave that open, not having him on camera saying things which are critical, the President might be more palatable for him.
CORDERO: So well, serving as White House Counsel is really, you know, a high point of one's legal practice and then there is a post service life that involves legal practice. And so every aspect of this, if he is going to comply in some way, and provide testimony under oath, he is going to try to manage every aspect of that to preserve his professional reputation and integrity.
COOPER: And Andrew, as we literally just found this out, are you surprised?
MCCABE: I'm not surprised, Anderson. I think it's -- you know, with yesterday's testimony, the expectation on Cipollone, the pressure to step forward and say what he knows is absolutely intense right now.
And look, he can still come in and negotiate the most favorable terms as Carrie has laid out that he possibly can to avoid being captured on video, to avoid his testimony being used in a very visceral and clear way in a later hearing. I am sure those are all things he would like to avoid.
He can still come in and to any individual question, claim presidential privilege and refuse to answer those questions and those issues can be litigated later.
But really, he has no ground to stand on legitimately to say, no, I won't come in and answer any questions whatsoever about matters that I discussed with people who are not the President of the United States. It just would be an untenable position, I think for him.
So I'm not surprised by this development. But we'll -- you know, we'll have to -- it remains to be seen what we'll actually get out of it.
COOPER: Yes. Andrew McCabe, Carrie Cordero, appreciate it. Thank you.
Next, more on the question of whether Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony was some kind of a tipping point. I'll ask "New York Times" columnist and author, Tom Friedman.
Later, dial "J" for Republican Senator Ron Johnson, the one who faked a cell phone call to try to dodge questions about his alleged involvement with the January 6th phony elector scheme. Tonight, how the January 6 investigation is affecting his re-election campaign.
COOPER: We are talking tonight about the fallout and potential future fallout from Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony yesterday before the House Select Committee, which now includes a subpoena going out tonight for former White House Counsel, Pat Cipollone.
Now according to a source familiar with his thinking, he will likely agree to a transcribed interview. We're just learning that, limited to specific topics to avoid privilege issues.
Other fallout includes people who were once loyal to the former President now having some second thoughts. Listen to what Mark Meadows' predecessor, Mick Mulvaney, he told CNN's Jake Tapper today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICK MULVANEY, FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: If you take what Cassidy Hutchinson said at face value then Donald Trump knew that the protesters had weapons and encouraged them to go to the Capitol anyway, that was stunning to me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: And not just to him. Perspective now from "New York Times" foreign affairs columnist, Tom Friedman, author of countless books, including "Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution and How it can Renew America."
Tom, good to have you on again. Been a bit more than 24 hours since Cassie Hutchinson testified. Does it sort of feel like a tipping point to you politically or legally? What did you make of her testimony?
THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN, FOREIGN AFFAIRS COLUMNIST, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": You know, Anderson, I can't speak to the legal tipping point, but it feels politically that I felt over the last several months that more and more what I'm going to call principled Republicans, moderate Republicans were saying to each other, you know, I really hope Donald Trump doesn't run. He really shouldn't run. It would have been good if he runs.
I think if there's been a tipping point, it's that a lot more of them have listened to this testimony, especially the fact that the President allegedly encouraged armed protesters to take the Capitol, even wanted to leave them at one point and are now concluding he must not run.
The dilemma for them, I don't have any sympathy for this dilemma is that they want to retain Trump's base without Trump and it is called the Ron DeSantis solution. But it's going to be very difficult because Trump will not go quietly into this good night.
COOPER: You write in your latest column, which is about Israel that Miss Hutchinson essentially forced Americans to ask themselves, what kind of country they want to have, what kind of leaders they want to have, what sort of soul is at the core of America? Do you think the country is any closer answering those questions?
FRIEDMAN: Yes, I just want to say one thing before I answer that question, Anderson, and that's this is a woman in her mid-20s. I mean, the bravery of this woman is compared to the cowardice of people like, you know, Representative McCarthy from California, Mitch McConnell.
I mean, this is a young woman in her mid-20s basically taking on the past President going before Congress. My hat is off to her as --
COOPER: At 26, she has a strength that Mark Meadows at 62 does not.
FRIEDMAN: Yes. She has more fiber and spine in her pinky than the entire Republican leadership. And I think we shouldn't lose sight of that. Really, my hat is off to her, as it is, again to Liz Cheney.
But you know, I think the question is not who Donald Trump is, Anderson. We know who Donald Trump is. If you haven't gotten it by now, folks, then, you know, you're never going to get it.
He is a bad person. He's a dishonest person. And he was -- he has been a terrible figure in American politics. He's brought out the worst in us. We know who he is. The question is, who are we? Who are we as a country?
Because what these hearings are telling us through the voice is really of principled Republicans. They're telling us what happened that day, our President led, inspired a violent insurrection in the Capitol. That is the truth.
But the truth is of no value, if we cannot act on the truth. That's really the question before the country.
Now, we know this is the truth, even doubters about this Committee know this is the truth. But are we so polarized as a people that we can't act on that truth? And if we are, that's a very, very bad sign for the future.
COOPER: If we are so polarized and can't act on the truth, then it raises a lot of questions about, where we go from here? How we can do anything? I mean, if a law and order in the -- I mean, it's ironic that the party which you know, the Republican Party was always the party supposedly of law and order, if you know, if the President is above the law that, that is chaos.
FRIEDMAN: I mean, what happened to us? I mean, to me, you know when you talk about the sort of the hardcore Republican supporters, remember, a woman in her Illinois, Mary Miller, a Member of Congress defeated another Member of Congress in a primary running against his support for the January 6 Committee. That was happening on the very day this testimony was happening.
I mean, that's perverse. Things are perverse that is. The thing -- think of the things you have to deny in order to pursue that logic.
And so, I felt for a long time, Anderson that, you know, a lot of these people aren't really focused on Trump, they actually hate the people who hate Trump. And Trump's just the cudgel the club, they used to beat them over the head, which is why almost nothing does virtually, nothing he does can actually change their behavior. People are all writing and saying, is this the one, is this the straw? There is no straw that will break this camel's back. Here's what can happen, though. And here's what must happen.
Principle Republicans, the very people who actually saved the last election, the secretaries of state that the election counters, moderate Republicans have to make clear they will not go with Trump. If that if he is the nominee, they will not vote for him, and they will risk the Republican Party losing. If that is the case, if they aren't ready to take that sacrifice for the country. If they aren't ready to do an ounce of what Cassidy Hutchinson did yesterday, or what Liz Cheney is doing every day that we're lost. We're lost. It means that the truth is never going to fit our tree (ph).
COOPER: Yes. Tom Friedman, thank you. Appreciate it.
Coming up, CNN's Manu Raju chases down Senator Ron Johnson for the second time in as many weeks, this time to Wisconsin the vulnerable incumbent has played hard to get even pretending to be on a phone to avoid discussing new revelations by the January 6 investigation. What his constituents are saying, next.
COOPER: Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson was already one of this election cycles most vulnerable incumbents and that was before the January 6 committee exposed how involved he in his office were in the fake electoral scheme. He has strenuously avoided answering questions about the new revelations to the point he tried to deal with fake phone call gambit with reporters last week. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator Johnson, how much did you know about what your chief of staff was doing with the alternate slates of electors?
SEN. RON JOHNSON (R-WI): I'm on the phone right now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, you're not. I can see your phone. I can see your screen.
MANU RAJU, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over)): Can you explain what your chief of staff was doing?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does your chief of staff still work for you, sir?
RAJU (voice-over): Can you explain what happened there? Why was your chief of staff even offering this to the vice president?
JOHNSON: Guys, this is a completely non-story. We've issued a statement. And, it's a non-story.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: CNN's Manu Raju politely waited until he was off the fake phone call was recently in Wisconsin trailing Johnson again, seeing whether Democrats can overcome their own obstacles to defeat the embattled Republican. Take a look.
RAJU (voice-over): Ron Johnson under fire again after the January 6 committee revealed his office's offering to pass off fake electors to Vice President Mike Pence.
This week in Milwaukee, refusing to answer CNN's question.
(on-camera): Real quick Senator. Senator, Senator, do you have time for questions, Senator? Senator Johnson, do you have time for questions please?
(voice-over): Johnson facing reelection has been on the ropes before. Twice, Democrats thought he'd lose the Wisconsin Senate race. Twice, he pulled it off.
JOHNSON: Aren't you just tired of all the anger and vision? God I am.
RAJU (voice-over): But with abortion is now banned in Wisconsin, Democrats hope their voters take their fury to the polls. But they first have to work out a Family Feud.
ALEX LASRY (D-WI) U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: We got to beat Ron Johnson in the fall and I'm the only candidate that can do that.
MANDELA BARNES (D-WI) U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: My campaign is the only campaign in the Democratic primary that's beating Ron Johnson with independent voters.
SARAH GODLEWSKI (D-WI) U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: I am a 72 county candidate.
TOM NELSON (D-WI) U.S. SENATE CANDIDATE: Our campaign is the real Wisconsin campaign.
RAJU (voice-over): More than a third of Democratic voters undecided ahead of the August 9 primary. So bend of the race, the Supreme Court reverting Wisconsin back to an 1849 law that bans abortions with no exceptions for rape or incest.
NELSON: I think it eliminates whatever advantage Republicans have.
RAJU (voice-over): Sarah Godlewski, Wisconsin State Treasurer faults her party for not codifying Roe.
GODLEWSKI: I have been frustrated that my own party has not prioritized this and trying to get this done and we've had 50 years.
RAJU (voice-over): Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes revealing his mother needed an abortion before he was born.
BARNES: If he was forced to carry the tire, it would have created all sorts of additional mental and physical health issues for her. I wouldn't be here today.
RAJU (voice-over): While Democratic governor Tony Evers has promised clemency for abortion providers, doctors fear they could still be at risk of being prosecuted in the future.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're afraid. We just don't know what the law means.
RAJU (voice-over): None of the leading Democrats that restrictions on abortions.
(on-camera): Shouldn't be any restrictions at all, including lead in a pregnancy.
LASRY: So I think that women should have the right to make their own health care decisions.
RAJU (voice-over): Johnson has said little about how the law will impact his state, but said of the Supreme Court.
JOHNSON: It was the appropriate decision.
RAJU (voice-over): Instead campaigning on inflation, while attacking President Biden's policies.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's the burden of Joe Biden's inflation tax on Wisconsin families.
RAJU (voice-over): Some Democrats aren't even saying if the unpopular Biden should run again.
(on-camera): Do you think he should run for a second term?
GODLEWSKI: The president needs to do what's best for him.
RAJU (on-camera): Do you think that Joe Biden should run for president again?
BARNES: Well, I'm focused on this race right now. We still got to get past November 2022.
COOPER: Our chief congressional correspondent Manu Raju joins us now. Is it clear how much Senator Johnson's connection to those fake collectors might impact his chances of reelection?
RAJU: It's unclear the moment, because Anderson right now the polls are showing this to be an incredibly tight race. If any of those four Democratic candidates emerge from the primary. According to a Marquette University poll, it will be essentially within a margin of error race for any of them, expect this essentially to go down to the wire tens of millions of dollars being spent.
The Democratic candidates themselves acknowledge that while they believe this, these controversies will drive up Johnson's negatives, that ultimately, this could be determined, again by the economy, by the inflation and how voters are feeling about the performance of the president, the president at this time, but that doesn't mean they're sharp for their softening their rhetoric. It has been incredibly sharp against Johnson in the aftermath is fake electors issue.
Alex Lasry, the candidate of the Milwaukee Bucks exactly who's running told me that it was treacherous and seditious what Ron Johnson did and two those candidates, Tom Nelson as well as Mandela Barnes said that Johnson should resign his Senate seat.
COOPER: Manu Raju, appreciate it. Manu, thanks so much.
Just ahead, a live report from San Antonio and breaking news on the dozens of migrants found dead in that semitruck. New details and charges in the cases, next.
COOPER: Some breaking news to report on the tragedy in Texas. Dozens of migrants found dead in the back of a semitruck in San Antonio during sweltering temperatures. Short time ago authorities provided an update on the investigation to find those responsible.
Omar Jimenez joins us now from San Antonio with detail. So, you're getting some new information on more charges. What do you know?
OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Anderson, these charges were just announced by the Justice Department against four individuals tied to this incident. For starters, the driver who has been charged with smuggling illegals, resulting in death. The Homeland Security agents say that they use surveillance video of this truck crossing through an immigration checkpoint and then match that person when they found him hiding in the brush when authorities first got to the scene. Another man was charged with conspiracy to smuggle illegals resulting in death. He was seen allegedly communicating with this driver through some form of communication. And then two others were charged with illegal possession of a weapon for someone illegally in the U.S. They traced the license plates of this truck to homes in this nearby area, all part of what DHS is describing as the deadliest smuggling human incident in U.S. history.
JIMENEZ (voice-over): Just before 6:00 p.m. on Monday, authorities received a tip about an abandoned tractor trailer on an empty country road on the outskirts of San Antonio. The doors the truck were partially open. And when authorities arrived, they found it stacked with bodies.
WILLIAM MCMANUS, CHIEF, SAN ANTONIO POLICE: The floor of the trailer, it was completely covered in bodies, completely covered in bodies. And there were at least 10 plus bodies outside the trailer. Because when we arrived, when EMS arrived, we were trying to find people who were still alive. So we had to move bodies out of the trailer onto the ground.
JIMENEZ (voice-over): Forty eight people were found dead inside that truck. More bodies were found outside the truck as well.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have so many bodies here. We got another body just north of trailer.
JIMENEZ (voice-over): So far. There are 53 victims from this incident, 40 men and 13 women, some may be under 18 years old. But there also survivors, 12 adults and four children were recovered and taken to local hospitals they suffered heatstroke and exhaustion.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Patients that we saw were hot to the touch.
JIMENEZ (voice-over): San Antonio reached 100 degrees Fahrenheit on the day the tractor trailer was found, it had no air conditioning or any sign of drinking water. Experts familiar with this kind of truck, see temperatures could reach up to 130 degrees when the doors are shut. It's unclear when or where the victims boarded the truck or how long they suffered in the heat before they were found.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They were still in there awaiting help when we arrived. Meaning just being too weak, we can stay to actually get out and help themselves.
JIMENEZ (on-camera): This is the road where the semitruck was found. One local called it la boca de lobo or the mouth of the wolf partly because of how pitch black it gets here at night. You can see there aren't any streetlights. It also runs parallel to a major interstate that starts down at the U.S.-Mexico border, one commonly used by smugglers.
(voice-over): Most of the victims identified so far were from Mexico, some from Honduras and Guatemala. Authorities say they were part of a smuggling operation from Mexico to the United States, the truck passed through a checkpoint north of Laredo on Monday. These new deaths bring the number of migrants who have died crossing the border this year to 390.
JIMENEZ: Now of the dozens found dead, the Justice Department says 22 of them are Mexican nationals, seven of them from Guatemala, two from Honduras and 17 of them who they were able to determine where at least not U.S. citizens as the long been prolonged ID process continues.
Where I'm standing now is where they were all found on Monday. Now at this point, it's turned into a makeshift memorial where people have filled in throughout the day coming to pay their respects, pray, leave signs, of course to remember this incredible tragedy Anderson.
COOPER: Yes, it is just sickening to imagine. Omar Jimenez, I appreciate it. Thank you. Up next, meet a couple who wanted to expand their family. They were expecting a baby boy but the fetus had severe abnormalities. The mother's life was at risk. They had to go out of state to get an abortion. Some worry now with Roe v Wade overturned and other mothers in the same situation may not be able to get to a state to get the same care.
COOPER: With the reversal of Roe v Wade according to the Guttmacher Institute, abortion is now banned or severely restricted in 11 states, there you see in dark orange, 13 other states in light orange are where bans are -- or severe restrictions are certain are likely. And at least two states Louisiana, Utah are in limbo due to legal fights. The rest currently have no restrictions. That includes Nebraska where the woman you're about to meet says she faced issues trying to get an abortion last year after she learned her unborn child had severe birth defects and her own life was in danger. She traveled to Colorado to get the procedure and she wants the option to travel could now be even more difficult.
She talked with CNN's Lucy Kafanov. Here's her report.
LUCY KAFANOV, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Stephanie Dworak and her husband Dave always wanted a big family, a sibling for their daughter Harper. So when they found out Stephanie was pregnant with a boy last summer they were overjoyed.
STEPHANIE DWORAK, FORCED TO SEEK ABORTION OUT OF STATE: This is a very wanted child. We planned for this baby.
KAFANOV (voice-over): But 12 weeks into the pregnancy, an ultrasound revealed an infallible seal, a birth defect where the fetuses internal organs were developing outside the body. This photo shows a defeated Stephanie the day she received the tragic news.
(on-camera): What would that have meant for quality of life for this baby?
DWORAK: There would have been none. He would not have been able to survive or come home.
KAFANOV (voice-over): Stephanie was also told her own life could be in jeopardy. At 19 weeks, she and her husband made the painful choice to terminate the pregnancy.
DWORAK: An abortion was what I needed to save my life and give my son the dignity that he deserved. I couldn't carry this baby to term and have my husband have to bury both of us. It just wasn't an option. Abortion was.
KAFANOV (voice-over): Their home state of Nebraska allowed abortions up to 22 weeks, but they couldn't find a clinic that could schedule the procedure in time. After a desperate search across nearby states, the family settled on the boulder abortion clinic in Colorado.
Dr. Warren Hearn has been providing abortions for nearly half a century. He's 84 years old and remembers the days before Roe vs. Wade.
WARREN HERN, BOULDER ABORTION CLINIC: Thousands of women died every year from unsafe illegal abortions. I think one of the consequences of this decision is that women will die as they did before Roe vs. Wade.
KAFANOV (voice-over): In Colorado, abortion is legal at all stages of pregnancy. Even before the Supreme Court's ruling last week, Colorado's family planning clinics were struggling to cope with a surge in out of state patients.
HERN: This is sort of an abortion intensive care unit. We get patients from all over the country who can't be seen in other clinics.
KAFANOV (on-camera): How do you see that impacting the surge of patients coming to Colorado?
HERN: Is more than we can absorb. And so, it takes a long time to expand the services you have to find the people who will do this and risked their lives to do it.
KAFANOV (voice-over): As one of the few people in the country who performs legal abortions later in pregnancy, Dr. Hern says he's seen his patient load increased 50% from a year ago and says he's worried too many women won't get the care they need.
HERN: One of the things that's critical to understand is that safe abortion is an essential component of women's health care in the 21st century. And that's the way it should be. And no woman's life and health should be at the mercy of the next election or zip code.
KAFANOV (on-camera): What's your message to people who say, you know, abortion bans and especially late term abortion bans are you know, it's about protecting that child's life?
DWORAK: I would love somebody who says that they were trying to protect my child to look me in the eye and say that he deserves to come into a world where he would have to fight for every breath he took, and be hooked up to drugs for his brief existence. How is that pro life? How is putting my life in danger pro life.
KAFANOV (voice-over): Harper still asks about Oliver James, the name that were picked out for her would be brother.
DWORAK: I had to tell her that baby was too sick. And that baby wasn't going to come home with us. And that she, she wasn't going to get to meet her little brother.
KAFANOV (voice-over): His ashes, hand and footprints enshrined on the living room shelf. DWORAK: That we very much want another child, but what if this happens again? I was so excited about the idea of a positive pregnancy test. And now it scares me. It scares me. Because I might not be able to get an abortion this time.
KAFANOV: Although Colorado guarantees the right to an abortion, the procedure is now illegal in many of the surrounding states. We've seen an influx of folks coming in from out of state to get an abortion which is straining clinics here. It's increasing wait time. Planned Parenthood tells me there's a minimum two week wait right now, as providers struggled to cope with a surge. Anderson.
COOPER: Lucy Kafanov, appreciate it. Thank you.
We'll be right back.
COOPER: New continues. Let's hand over Sara Sidner in "CNN TONIGHT." Sara.