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Anderson Cooper 360 Degrees
IDF: New Video Shows Hamas Tunnel Under Al-Shifa Hospital Complex; IDF: Body Of 65-Year-Old Israeli Hostage Found Near Al-Shifa Hospital; Israel Drops Leaflets On Parts Of Southern Gaza, Suggesting Possible Expansion Of Offensive Against Hamas; Judge Temporarily Lifts Gag Order On Trump, Attorneys In New York Civil Fraud Trial; Rep. Santos Says He Won't Seek Reelection Following Damning Ethics Cmte Report; House Ethics Chairman To Seek Santos Expulsion; Former President Lays Out More Aggressive Plan For Potential Second White House Term; U.S. Hate Groups Use Israel-Hamas Conflict To Stoke Antisemitism. Aired 8-9p ET
Aired November 16, 2023 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: I asked him about one of these things, the disturbing allegation by a US Navy veteran, who told me Santos stole money that had been meant for life-saving surgery for his dog.
BURNETT: Congressman, did -- are you saying you never spoke to him either?
REP. GEORGE SANTOS, (R) NEW YORK: I've -- look, this is even news to me now. This is breaking news for me. I don't even know this man's name or who he is, ever spoken to him.
BURNETT: FBI agents are investigating Santos' role in the alleged GoFundMe account that was meant for that veteran's service dog.
Thank you so much for joining us. AC 360 starts now.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Tonight on "360," new video from Israel they say proves Hamas use Gaza's largest hospital as a command-and- control center. We'll have the latest on the war and the body of an Israeli hostage recovered today.
Plus, a CNN exclusive on the Hunter Biden investigation. We now know of a second grand jury in the probe in a Biden family member, the President's brother, has already been subpoenaed.
Also, the George Santos House Ethics report released today. The details are devastating, and now he says he won't seek reelection.
Good evening. We begin with Israel's war on Hamas. What you see here that we're about to show you is the first visual evidence Israel's military has produced to try and support its assertion echoed by the White House that there was a command-and-control center along with a tunnel system operated by Hamas at the Al-Shifa Hospital complex.
The only thing the IDF has shown is one tunnel shaft. You can see an entrance there, what appears to be concrete reinforcement, exposed pipes and cabling can be seen close to the surface. The video has been geolocated by CNN, but we cannot independently confirm any of Israel's claims about the nature of this site.
Now late today, Hamas called Israel's claims, quote, "baseless lies." Israel today also announced it had found the body of a hostage in a structure adjacent to the hospital.
Yehudit Weiss was 65 years old. She was a grandmother. She was abducted from the Kibbutz Be'eri October 7th. Her husband was killed during the terror attack. Israel today said their search at the Al- Shifa Hospital may take, in their words, a few days or weeks to finish.
Also, Israel dropped more leaflets today on parts of southern Gaza, telling residents to move. This suggests a possible expansion of Israel's operation against Hamas.
Jeremy Diamond is in Israel tonight with more on that new IDF video.
JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice over): A Hamas tunnel below Gaza's largest hospital, that's what the Israeli military says this video shows. Nearly 48 hours after Israeli forces raided Al- Shifa Hospital, these are the first images of what the Israeli military says is an operational tunnel shaft on the grounds of the hospital complex.
CNN cannot independently verify those claims. But using this frame, CNN has geolocated this video to the Al-Shifa complex, about 30 meters away from one of the hospital's main buildings.
REAR ADMIRAL DANIEL HAGARI, ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES SPOKESPERSON: It is here in Shifa Hospital where Hamas operates some of its command-and- control cells.
DIAMOND (voice over): For weeks, Israeli officials have laid the groundwork for an operation targeting Shifa Hospital, claiming Hamas operates a massive underground complex below it. And in recent days, the US has also backed up those allegations.
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: One thing has been established is that Hamas does have headquarters, weapons, materiel below this hospital.
DIAMOND (voice over): As Israeli special forces continue searching the hospital complex, they are also uncovering weapons and ammunition.
LT. COL. JONATHAN CONRICUS, ISRAEL DEFENSE FORCES INTERNATIONAL SPOKESPERSON: There is an AK-47. There are cartridges, ammo. There are grenades in here.
DIAMOND (voice over): Which the Israeli military calls "concrete evidence" that Hamas used Gaza's largest hospital to wage war.
Near the hospital, Israeli officials also say they found the body of 65-year-old Yehudit Weiss, who was among those abducted on October 7th. Israel's decision to send troops into a hospital has drawn fierce criticism with the UN's aid chief saying he is appalled by the raid, President Biden standing by Israel's actions.
BIDEN: It's not like they're rushing into the hospital and knocking down doors, you know, pulling people aside and shooting people indiscriminately.
(FAMILIES OF HOSTAGES rallying and chanting, "Bring them home now!")
DIAMOND (voice over): Amid the fighting, the families of hostages held by Hamas ramping up the pressure.
ZOHAR AVIGDORI, RELATIVE OF HOSTAGE: This whole huge march of families up to Jerusalem comes to make a very clear stand to our government that they need to take any deal that they have and pay any price for these people, for their citizens pretty much.
DIAMOND (voice over): As negotiations drag on over a deal that could see Hamas free dozens of women and children in exchange for a multiday ceasefire ...
AVIGDORI: This is my sister-in-law and this is my niece. She is 12 years old.
DIAMOND (voice over): ... their families are racked with anxiety.
AVIGDORI: It's been nerve-racking, to tell you the truth because, again, we don't know who to believe. We are trying to kind of scrape the last remnants of faith and trust in our government that when a relevant deal comes to the table, they will take it.
DIAMOND (voice over): For now, they march and wait.
COOPER: Jeremy Diamond joins us now. Is there any update on the hostage negotiations?
DIAMOND: Well, Anderson, those negotiations are certainly ongoing at this hour. We know that not only are US officials in the region, but those negotiations mediated by Qatar between Israel and Hamas are ongoing.
There appears to be a fairly specific deal on the table, perhaps 50 hostages, women and children in exchange for a three to five-day ceasefire by Israel. But clearly, there has yet to be a deal. And we have watched, of course over, the last several weeks as deals have appear to have gotten close and then talks have fallen apart again. And for the families of those who are missing like Zohar Avigdori, who I spoke with today, you know, it's just nerve-racking, as he said. And they simply don't know which reports to believe about what they are seeing, and they also aren't confident entirely that the Israeli prime minister and his war cabinet will agree to the kind of deal that they would agree to.
I asked Zohar, do you believe that the Israeli prime minister's priorities are where your priorities are? And he said he wasn't sure, but he said they better be, because he said that it's the prime minister who works for him.
COOPER: Is the IDF standing by their claim of a command-and-control center under the hospital, which seems to be backed up by US intelligence, although I assume US intelligence was largely using intelligence from Israel, because I don't think the US has a lot of assets on the ground in Gaza.
DIAMOND: The Israelis are standing by it. The Americans are standing by it. I mean, you heard President Biden just yesterday continuing to really put his neck out there, perhaps even further than he needed to in order to back up this claim about Hamas' command-and-control center. Hamas, for its part, though, is completely continuing to completely deny what the Israelis are saying.
In a statement tonight, the Hamas-run government media office says that these are baseless lies. They say that these are fabricated narratives, false scenarios, distorted information. And he says that it is part of Israel's efforts to try to avoid accountability for a raid on a hospital.
Of course, under international law, if you use a hospital for military purposes and you're actively using it to fight against the enemy, that hospital does indeed lose its protections. And that's why Israel says that targeting this hospital with this raid is legitimate. Hamas, of course, maintains that it's not actually using the hospital, and therefore it says Israel's actions are illegal -- Anderson.
COOPER: All right. Jeremy Diamond, thank you.
Joining us now is Rami Igra, former Chief of the Hostages in the MIA Unit of Mossad, also Retired General Wesley Clark, CNN Military Analyst, Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander.
Rami, the IDF sounded confident in recent days that there was a command-and-control center at the -- at Al-Shifa. They've shown this tunnel shaft they say they found. Are you confident there's more?
RAMI IGRA, FORMER DIVISION CHIEF OF MOSSAD & MIA UNIT: Yes, the IDF is not really raiding the hospital. As you can see, there is no real fighting in the hospital for this. As they're -- delicately, the IDF could be (inaudible) delicately going through the hospital and through its basement and is trying to reveal the tunnels, which are underneath this hospital. What thus strengthen the claim is two things. First of all, there was a body of one of the hostages that was murdered in the Gaza Strip after the 7th of October in an adjacent building to the hospital. And they have also -- what your correspondent has not said -- they've also said have taken several bodies that are thought to be hostages to be checked in Israel, to be verified as they are or they are not hostages.
As you've seen in the pictures, they found arms. They found all kinds of weaponry in the hospital. And it seems that, at the end of the day, we will see -- we will justify the claim.
It's not really that important. For us -- at the end of the day, Hamas is underneath the Gaza Strip. The Hamas has thousands of more fighters, which are now hiding.
Nobody is above ground. And they are waiting to come -- they come out out of the (inaudible), fight guerrilla warfare, and try to shoot our forces. The skirmishes have been little, and they have been losing them one by one.
COOPER: General Clark, how confident are you in the idea that there is a command-and-control center here?
GEN. WESLEY CLARK (RET.), FORMER NATO SUPREME ALLIED COMMANDER: Well, I haven't seen any -- I don't have the security clearances to see what the president and his advisers are seeing, but I am very comfortable.
We know that this has been talked about for a long time. We've seen the maps. It's very consistent with the way Hamas operates.
I'm listening to the rhetoric Hamas is using. It's clearly over the top. They're clearly trying to deceive the public on top of this massive media blitz that they've had against Israel. And when I see the entrance to the tunnel, yes, I -- that looks like the entrance to an underground chamber.
Now, the next thing to do is put the camera down there on a pole. Show us. And I'm sure Israel will move into this, because Israel understands just as well as any of us do that they've got to use this information to sway global opinion.
Global opinion has been swayed by a bunch of lies promoted by Hamas. It's time to set the record straight. And I think this is beginning to set the record straight.
COOPER: Rami, do you have any sense of how most hostages would be held in Gaza? I mean, would it -- would individuals be alone? Would it be -- I assume it would be sort of small groups of people. And obviously, I mean, according to reports, Hamas doesn't necessarily have all of them in its custody. There is also Islamic Jihad which has some and also perhaps criminal gangs as well.
IGRA: Hamas has claimed at the beginning of this that they have 150 hostages. The jihad has said 30. And the rest are kept by criminal (ph) families that have come with the Nukhba forces into Israel and abducted for personal gains here and there all kinds of people on their way.
Altogether, 240 more or less hostages. We found out that some of them, like yesterday with this lady that was found in the adjacent building to the hospital, some have been already murdered. But they are probably -- they probably fled together with Hamas (inaudible) into southern Gaza.
This is why you're seeing these flyers being put around Khan Younis area in order for the Israeli forces to prepare to the next step. We do not want to harm any noncombatant citizen to the Gaza Strip.
And we are trying to -- as you know, we are trying and we will be successful in eradicating the Hamas. And the only way to eradicate the Hamas is slowly go through the Gaza Strip and find each and every one of them, as we have been doing up until now, until at the end of the day, and that might take months. We'll see no Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
COOPER: Rami, you're saying this hostage had been murdered. I hadn't seen a cause of death or do you know that for a fact that she was murdered? I mean, there's -- the only other alternative would be in some sort of a rocket strike was injured.
IGRA: She was taken out. She was taken alive from pictures that -- in the information that was gathered by the Israeli intelligence. Fact she is dead. And the Israeli Army spokesman has said that she was murdered in the Gaza Strip.
I don't think that the Hamas would take bodies. They have 240 hostages. They did not need more bodies in order to haggle with bodies. They have enough hostages to use as strategic tools. This is what they're doing. They're using the hostages as strategic tools to stop the Israeli or to get the Israeli Army into a ceasefire situation, as you know from negotiations that are going on.
COOPER: General Clark, in terms of those negotiations, you know, there is reports of negotiations over pauses, maybe several days depending on how many hostages may be released. From a military standpoint, what does a pause in the fighting allow Hamas to do?
CLARK: Well, it allows Hamas to replenish, reorganize, rearm its people, redeploy, gain intelligence information, plan strikes, obscure evidence, clean out the remaining arms in these other hospitals, and try to clean up the record.
It's a big break in the military momentum. The Israeli attacks have been very systematic. They've been very deliberate. They're using overwatch. They're using high technology. They're doing everything they can to prevent civilian casualties, but they're keeping the pressure on Hamas.
A three or four-day pause lets all that pressure go. And then the issue will be and the world opinion will say, well, I need you to stop for three or four days. Don't get started again. Don't start, don't start.
So, you know, it's very hard. If I were the Israeli military commander, I would be dead set against that pause, because once you do that pause, trying to get the political momentum to start it again against all the finger-pointing and everything else that's going to go on during the pause, it's exactly what Rami was saying about the strategic use of the hostages.
If Israel wants to really eliminate the problem of Hamas, it's got to press forward. Now, it's got to protect its information flank. So the information of these hospitals, what's underground and so forth is very, very important.
The fact that this woman may have been murdered after she was taken hostage, that's very important for people in the world to understand. So Israel has to come forward with the information that lets this become understandable to the world population.
Let's think of it, Anderson, this is -- Gaza wasn't a group of terrorists, this is a state. Hamas was the government.
CLARK: And they attacked another state. And now they're hiding behind their own population. We didn't let Nazi Germany do that. (Inaudible) ...
COOPER: General Wesley Clark ...
CLARK: ... won't let Hamas do it is my prediction.
COOPER: ... Rami Igra as well, thank you so much.
Still to come tonight, a temporary legal victory for the former President in his New York civil fraud trial. And a CNN exclusive, a recent move by the special counsel overseeing the Hunter Biden investigation suggesting the evidence is expanding -- or excuse me, I should say the investigation is expanding.
Also tonight, you knew the George Santos ethics report was going to be bad, but the details are really bad. Allegations he stole from his campaign to pay for Botox and OnlyFans. The details, plus his future, next.
COOPER: Major developments tonight in three different federal legal matters involving the former President, as well as president Biden. First, an appeals court judge has temporarily lifted the gag order imposed on the former President and his lawyers by the judge in the New York civil fraud trial.
Last hour, the former president posted his first truth social message since the order was lifted, attacking many involved in the case, including the judge and the judge's clerk.
Also tonight, sources tell CNN that no charges are expected in the special counsel investigation into President Biden's handling of classified material. However, in a CNN exclusive, sources say the special counsel investigating his son Hunter Biden is now also using a grand jury in California in addition to Washington, DC. In fact, it's already produced a subpoena for a key member of the Biden family, the president's brother.
Our Chief Legal Affairs Correspondent Paula Reid joins us now. So what more are you learning, Paula?
PAULA REID, CNN CHIEF LEGAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, we've learned that prosecutors are using a grand jury in California to gather evidence connected to the president's son. Now, it appears that this investigation is focused on his alleged failure to pay taxes during several specific years. This was something that was supposed to be resolved with a plea deal earlier this year, but that fell apart.
Now, these alleged tax crimes occurred in California is also where Hunter lives, which is likely why they are using a grand jury in that state. We've learned that multiple witnesses have been subpoenaed for testimony and documents. And one of those witnesses is President Biden's brother, James Biden. He is also a one-time business associate of Hunter's.
Now we know that Hunter Biden has previously been charged by the special counsel with gun charges in Delaware, and the fact that they're now using a grand jury in California signals there could be more charges coming for the president's son.
COOPER: And in terms of the investigation of President Biden's handling of classified documents, we mentioned the special counsel is not expected to bring charges. What details do you know?
REID: That's exactly right. Multiple sources tell us they do not expect that anyone will be charged as a result of this special counsel investigation, but Robert Hur, who has been overseeing this probe, he is expected to deliver a detailed report explaining exactly how they carried out this probe. This report is also, Anderson, expected to be critical of President Biden and his associates for how they handled these sensitive materials.
Now, they expect to have all of this wrapped up by the end of the year, but I'm told that could slide a little bit into next year.
Now, some Trump allies are trying to draw comparisons between the Biden document probe and the Trump document investigation, which is, of course, going to be a criminal trial next spring.
Three key differences here, Anderson -- volume, dissemination of this information, and cooperation. We're talking about dozens of documents with Biden, hundreds with Trump. Of course, Trump did not cooperate when the archives want the documents back; Biden did.
And then lastly, former President Trump is on tape appearing to share classified information, sensitive information with people who don't have clearances. There is no such evidence for President Biden.
COOPER: Paula Reid, thanks very much.
Perspective now on the cases from CNN's Senior Legal Analyst Elie Honig, a former assistant US attorney, and CNN Political Commentator Kate Bedingfield, former Communications Director in the Biden White House.
How significant, Elie, do you think this is?
ELIE HONIG, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: It's bad news for Hunter Biden any way you slice this. And let's remember, he already has a pending indictment in the federal district court in Delaware for the firearms- related charges. And now, he potentially is looking at a second indictment out of California.
And if we think about the potential tax charges here, it's important to keep in mind, when Hunter Biden went into court a few months ago with DOJ, they had a deal that he was going plead guilty to misdemeanor tax offenses. And they agreed, DOJ and Hunter Biden agreed that he had failed to pay over a million dollars in income taxes that he owed.
So assuming, which I think is a fair assumption that DOJ has evidence of that, that feels like the minimum charges he may face. It may get worse. But it's important to understand the fact that there's a grand jury does not ensure that there will be an indictment, but it certainly does make it more likely. And that's a problem.
COOPER: Kate, I mean, is this a problem you think both this grand jury -- I mean, could this grand jury both politically and personally be a problem anything for the President?
KATE BEDINGFIELD, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR & FORMER BIDEN WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: Well, I mean, look, I think to some extent we did know this was coming, right, because David Weiss said when the plea agreement fell apart that he intended to bring charges. So it's not entirely shocking.
I think in terms of political ramifications, remember, I mean, this is about Hunter Biden. It's not about Joe Biden. It's not about President Biden.
And we've seen time and again Republicans have tried to make political hay out of this. They've tried to make this a problem for Joe Biden. And it hasn't been.
And that's, in part, because Hunter has been very forthcoming about his own personal struggles, his own addiction, what he was going through at the time that some of this was ongoing. And Joe Biden has been very clear, that he had no involvement in his son's business dealings.
So I think for Republicans to try to make this a political opportunity, I think it's a miscalculation on their part. So ...
COOPER: So I assume you would be advising the president to not really say anything, to just kind of remain silent on this?
BEDINGFIELD: Absolutely, absolutely. I think when the president has been asked about this, he has said that he's proud of his son. He had talked about his personal relationship with his son and the things that Hunter went through. But he has been very quiet about the specifics here.
And he should continue to be. He should continue to be. This is a legal matter that Hunter is dealing with. Most voters across the country want to hear from Joe Biden what he's going to do to make their lives better, and that's where the president's focus should stay.
COOPER: And certainly on the special counsel regarding the handling of classified documents, that's certainly good news for the administration.
HONIG: Yes, for sure. It's got to be a relief. The special counsel has now been at it for 10 or 11 months. So while there was no public indication that Joe Biden had criminal intent or criminal knowledge, you never know.
This is an aggressive prosecutor, Robert Hur, the special counsel. So I'm sure that there is a sigh of relief coming from the White House.
What remains to be seen is, in the report and there will be a report, we remember the Mueller report, for example, will it say that even though there is not a crime, there was some bad conduct or will it completely exonerate Joe Biden? But either way, good news for Joe Biden.
COOPER: And I mean, Kate, if -- assuming no charges, if there is criticism about the way the president and his staff handled classified documents, how damaging is that for the president, especially juxtaposed to the former president who obviously we know the issues with his handling of classified documents?
BEDINGFIELD: Well, that's the key, right, Anderson. I mean, any discussion of this in the political arena is going to be juxtaposed with Trump and with Trump's wrongdoing here. And there was -- there is a dramatic difference between the way the Biden White House and President Biden handled this and the way Donald Trump has handled the inquiry into his handling of classified documents.
Biden has been incredibly forthcoming, said from the outset he would cooperate with DOJ, would provide anything that they wanted. We've seen that that has been the case. We've seen reporting that has showed, for example, that his attorney was very clear with DOJ that they could have any access that they wanted.
And that's strikingly different than President Trump, who has intentionally withheld documents and, you know, we could talk forever about the ways in which he has mishandled classified documents with intention.
So I think that, you know, any discussion of this in the political arena is going to be juxtaposed with Trump's wrongdoing. That contrast, I think, is a good one for Biden.
But at the end of the day, again, I would go back to what voters want to hear is how the president is going to help their lives. And so any discussion of this for Republicans is taking away from an opportunity to take what they're going to do to help voters.
COOPER: And, Elie, on the gag order on the former president in the New York civil trial, is that gone for good?
HONIG: No, it's on hold because the Court of Appeals have said we want the take a look at this. I actually think this gag order is narrow and appropriate. I was never a fan of gag orders as a prosecutor. I never asked for one.
But let's remember, this gag order simply says hands off, no comments about my staff. That's it. So Trump is free under this -- even under this the gag order to criticize the judge, the prosecutors, the AG, the case. The only thing he can't do under this gag order is attack the clerk, the courtroom staff.
To me, that should be upheld. That is a narrow gag order, but it's pending right now. The Court of Appeals is going to rule on it soon.
COOPER: All right. Elie Honig, thanks so much.
Kate Bedingfield as well, thanks so much.
BEDINGFIELD: Thank you.
COOPER: Next, a new damning House Ethics report on Congressman George Santos. The question is, will he be expelled? The latest from Capitol Hill next.
COOPER: New York Republican Congressman George Santos says he will not run for reelection next year following the release of a damning ethics committee report today. Santos condemned the investigation and the report.
CNN's Manu Raju, who has had many exchanges with the congressman, has details.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: George Santos is a fraud. He should not be a member of Congress.
MANU RAJU, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): George Santos now with serious risk of being removed from Congress as support grows for his expulsion following a devastating report from the bipartisan Ethics Committee saying he sought to fraudulently exploit every aspect of his House candidacy for his own personal financial profit.
The panel found that Santos blatantly stole from his campaign, including for travel and Botox, even making a payment to Only Fans, an online subscription service that primarily showcases adult content. The report also alleges he reported fictitious loans and sustained it all through a constant series of lies.
REP. TONY GONZALES (R), TEXAS: I think the people of his district need representation and they're not getting that right now.
RAJU (voice-over): The damning report concludes that he knowingly filed false reports with the FEC and made willful violations in financial disclosures with the House. The GOP chairman of the Ethics Committee plans to file a resolution to expel Santos. An expulsion would be unprecedented.
While he would be the sixth House member ever expelled, the others were removed after being convicted in court or fighting for the confederacy.
REP. MICHAEL GUEST (R), ETHICS COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN: That will be enough for members to be able to make a decision as to whether or not they believe it would be proper to expel Representative Santos.
RAJU (voice-over): In an interview with CNN this month, Santos acknowledged making mistakes in his filing.
(on-camera): They said you made up your income and that could be a problem for your ethics problem. What happened? I mean, did you not list your income properly here?
REP. GEORGE SANTOS (R), NEW YORK: All I can say is, first, no, that's not true. Second, were there mistake made on those forms? Now I know they were. Were they malicious? No. I didn't understand how that worked. And I'm a new candidate and I'm sorry that, like, mistakes were made.
RAJU (voice-over): And denied making fake loans to his campaign.
(on-camera): Because one of the things they say is that there's a $500,000 loan that you made.
SANTOS: Oh, I made $500,000 loan.
RAJU (on-camera): But you had $8,000 in your bank account. And they say there's no evidence that --
SANTOS: Like I said, I made -- I can guarantee you that I made the financial loans to my campaign that are on the record.
RAJU (voice-over): Today Santos blasted the bipartisan committee, calling the report biased and a disgusting politicized smear. Yet he did announce he would not seek a second term next year, saying his family deserved better, a reversal from just two weeks ago.
(on-camera): So they expel you and then they put someone else in the seat, you're going to run in 2024?
RAJU: Now, the chairman of the House Ethics Committee, Michael Guest, plans to begin that process tomorrow to expel George Santos, filing a resolution with the House. The vote would expect -- be expected at the end of the month. It would require two-thirds of the House to get there.
And by our calculations, that would require 53 Republicans who had previously opposed expulsion to join with Democrats who are expected to kick him out. And right now, there are about a dozen of those Republicans who have switched their position will now support expulsion.
But, Anderson, the Republican leadership is still silent on this issue, including the speaker of the House, Mike Johnson, who issued a statement through a spokesperson calling it very troubling. But the members should keep in mind the institution that they serve as they cast a potential vote in the days ahead here. So still some questions about whether Santos can survive this. Anderson?
COOPER: Manu Raju, thanks so much.
With me now is Republican Congressman Ken Buck of Colorado. He's a member of the Conservative House Freedom Caucus and a part of a growing number of lawmakers in support of Santos being expelled following the release of this report.
Congressman, thanks for being with us. What specifically in the Ethics Committee report led you to conclude that Santos should be expelled?
REP. KEN BUCK (R), COLORADO: Well, Anderson, I didn't vote for his expulsion the first time that we had a vote. I changed my opinion after this. He didn't receive due process the first time. He hadn't been convicted of a crime. The Ethics Committee hadn't investigated.
Now they have investigated. They've drawn some very troubling conclusions, and they didn't even look at the most serious allegations because they didn't want to interfere with the criminal cases. But when you -- when the Ethics Committee says that he, George Santos, has brought Congress reputation into disrepute, I think that's fairly significant. It's hard to bring an institution that only has an 11 percent approval rating into disrepute, but evidently George Santos can do that.
COOPER: Speaker Johnson called it troubling but stopped short of calling for Santos' expulsion or resignation, as Manu said. Do you think a motion to expel would succeed if and when it's put to a vote? BUCK: I think it will get more and more momentum as individuals are home for the Thanksgiving break. I think when we come back, you'll see that motion to expel. I think you will see more and more members voting for that and it'll be maybe a close vote, but I think he will be expelled if he doesn't resign. I hope he resigns before we get to that point.
COOPER: I mean, obviously if Santos was expelled, that would give Republicans an even slimmer majority in the House. Do you think it's an important factor for your colleagues to consider when voting?
BUCK: I don't. I think his conduct is the most important factor. We actually get a member retired from Utah, we will get that seat back and -- before this explosion will take place. So it'll happen right around the same time and we'll have the same number of Republicans in the House with -- after the expulsion.
COOPER: You're a former high ranking federal prosecutor, do you think the criminal case against Santos is strong?
BUCK: You know, I haven't seen the evidence in that case. I've seen the allegations. The allegations are certainly very serious allegations, allegations that would warrant a prison term if he's convicted of those allegations.
COOPER: He says he's no longer running for reelection in order to protect his family from unwanted media attention. Do you think it's an attempt to stave off an expulsion?
BUCK: I don't think it will work. It may be an attempt. I don't think it will work. I think Congress at some point -- you know, we've had a number of ugly incidents just this past week. We've certainly had a lot of name calling before that. I think tensions are high right now. I think that George Santos has shown that he doesn't have the character to serve in Congress and I think that he is likely to be expelled. I think that it's going to happen in the next couple of weeks.
COOPER: You talked about ugly incidents. I mean, there was this alleged physical altercation between Congressman McCarthy and Burchett the other day. He said McCarthy elbowed him in the back. Senator Markwayne Mullin almost got into a fistfight with a witness during a hearing. I mean, given your experience, what is going on? I mean, does it seem crazier than usual? Or just -- I mean, what do you attribute this to?
BUCK: Well, I do think it's crazier than normal. I think that we have been here for a number of weeks in a row, I believe 10 weeks in a row. Obviously, we've had weekends and other things, but it isn't always easy to get back to a lot of the districts over the weekend. So people have been in D.C. away from their family, and I think tensions are getting high.
I think tensions are also getting high because we're not passing the appropriations bills and moving forward. And that's a difficult sign. We've had some difficult votes like the continuing resolutions. And so I think that this break, this Thanksgiving break is really necessary at this time. And I hope that people come back with a better attitude.
COOPER: Yes. Congressman Ken Buck, thanks so much. Appreciate it.
BUCK: Thank you.
COOPER: New polling out of New Hampshire tonight comes as the former president outlines an extreme agenda in his bid to return to the White House. We'll be right back.
COOPER: New CNN polling out of New Hampshire, support for the former president is at 42 percent among likely Republican voters. That's up three points from September. Nikki Haley rose eight points, putting her in second. Former president is already laying out an extreme plan for what a possible second term would look like for him.
CNN's Kristen Holmes has that.
KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Not only does Donald Trump plan to win back the White House, but he and his allies are already outlining plans to overhaul the federal government and implement radical policies within hours of taking the oath, vowing to purge the federal workforce.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And on day one, I will reissue my 2020 executive order, restoring president's authority to tell rogue and corrupt bureaucrats. You're fired.
HOLMES (voice-over): And use the Justice Department to target political adversaries.
TRUMP: On day one of my new administration, I will direct the DOJ to investigate every radical district attorney and attorney general in America for their illegal, racist and reverse enforcement of the law.
HOLMES (voice-over): As for the second day and beyond, Trump and his allies have promised to wield the power of the executive branch in unprecedented ways.
TRUMP: In 2024, we are going to put America first like never before.
HOLMES (voice-over): With a focus on revenge. Telling Univision this month --
TRUMP: If I happen to be president and I see somebody who's doing well and beating me very badly, I say go down and indict them.
HOLMES (voice-over): As in his first term, many of Trump's policies are expected to prompt robust legal challenges.
[20:45:00] ALL: This is what democracy looks like.
HOLMES (voice-over): And political opposition.
ALL: The people united will never be divided.
STEPHEN VLADECK, LAW PROFESSOR, UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS: The typical constraints of the political process don't seem to apply to him. There's not a lot of law to deal with a president who just doesn't care about the law.
HOLMES (voice-over): This time to avoid delays, Trump align groups are laying the groundwork in advance.
PAUL DANS, DIRECTOR, PROJECT 2025: This is for conservatives to help the next standard bearer to be ready day one.
HOLMES (voice-over): Paul Dans overseas Project 2025, a transition team run by conservative think tank, the Heritage Foundation.
DANS: We're a coalition of 70 of the leading conservative organizations essentially joining our forces to to bring great people into the fold to put our ideas and people into the bloodstream in the next administration.
HOLMES (voice-over): These efforts are welcome to a point. Two of Trump's senior campaign advisers tell CNN, quote, "None of these groups or individuals speak for President Trump or his campaign". One priority in a second term, a crackdown on illegal immigration that would go beyond the hardline proposals that fueled Trump's first run for office, including mass deportations and detention camps.
ALL: Build that wall. Build that wall.
HOLMES (voice-over): One priority in a second term, a crackdown on illegal immigration that would go beyond the hard-line proposals that fueled Trump's first run for office, including mass deportations and detention camps.
TRUMP: We will use all necessary state, local, federal and military resources to carry out the largest domestic deportation operation in American history. And we have no choice. Some people won't like that. We have no choice.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President.
HOLMES (voice-over): The former president has also promised to expand his travel ban from predominantly Muslim countries.
ALL: No hate, no fear. Refugees are welcome here.
HOLMES (voice-over): That Joe Biden rescinded after taking office.
TRUMP: When I returned to Office, the travel ban is coming back even bigger and much stronger than before.
HOLMES: And Anderson, one thing to just reiterate here is that this isn't just rhetoric or musings about a potential second term, he is surrounding himself with like-minded ideologically aligned people who are trying to figure out how to actually implement this.
And to be clear, it's not just these two bit lawyers, in some cases, it's constitutional experts. And the big difference between 2016 and now is that Donald Trump knows exactly what he wants to implement going into office, meaning that he can screen people ahead of time making sure that the people who are surrounding him are people who also want to see that through. Anderson?
COOPER: Yes. Kristen Holmes, thank you.
Ahead, the FBI director's warning about antisemitism in this country. And new reporting on how some bigots are using A.I. to spread their message. Also, the fallout for Elon Musk after he agreed with an antisemitic post on his social media site X.
COOPER: More signs antisemitism is on the rise in the United States. Elon Musk is facing criticism for agreeing with an antisemitic post on his social media platform X. Musk endorsed the claim that Jewish communities push, quote, "hatred against whites", writing in response, quote, "You have said the actual truth".
Also tonight, IBM has suspended its advertising and acts after one of its ads appeared alongside pro-Nazi content. The CEO of X Linda Yaccarino wrote in a post this afternoon, quote, "X's point of view has always been very clear that discrimination by everyone should stop across the board".
And on Wednesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray told the House Homeland Security Committee that the bureau has seen threats rise significantly after October 7, mostly against the Jewish community.
Tonight, CNN's Donnie O'Sullivan shows us how hate groups in the U.S. are actively trying to stoke antisemitism. We want to warn you some of the images you're about to see are offensive. Here's what Donnie uncovered.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go, Hamas. Go, Hamas.
DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): These are not typical pro-Palestine supporters protesting outside the White House.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's a bunch of lies. Just like your -- holocaust. Bullshit, it's a bunch of lies.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): They're part of an antisemitic group founded by white supremacist.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No more.
ALL: Jewish lies.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Some of the same people who were behind the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. They're just one of multiple hate groups in the United States using the Israel- Hamas conflict to push an agenda of antisemitism. But extremists are not just showing up at pro-Palestinian protests. They're dumping antisemitic fliers in neighborhoods across the country. It's happened in 35 states so far this year.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just can't believe the hate that still exist. And, you know, towards the Jewish people. And so I totally despise this.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Some of the flyers are the work of the Goyim Defense League, a network of antisemitic extremists who are also linked to disruptions at city council meetings across the country. They call in to spew hate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's always the Jews.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The American slave trade was Jewish.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): But a few weeks ago in Calabasas, a new tactic using artificial intelligence.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hi, I'm John Greenblatt, and I'm the CEO of the Anti-Defamation League.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): That may sound like Jonathan Greenblatt, the head of the ADL, a top organization that combats hate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The ADL indeed tracks antisemitic incidents.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): But it wasn't him. It was actually a fake voice created using A.I.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We are finally admitting the truth about the fliers at gtvflyers.com.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): The Goyim Defense League celebrated the call instant which made it sound like the ADL was endorsing the hate groups' antisemitic fliers.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We simply cannot debunk them. They are true.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is just an attempt by individuals to disrupt and demean and shock people and get a response that affects others.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): The head of the group is currently serving a 30-day jail sentence in Florida for littering charges related to the antisemitic fliers.
BEN DECKER, CEO, MEMETICA: Communities, unfortunately, are sharing active footage from Hamas celebrating the deaths of Jewish people.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Ben Decker read a threat analysis company that tracks online hate. He says there has been a massive spike in support for Hamas by American extremists, much of it on 4chan, and notorious hate filled sites. And the extremists are taking us a step further using A.I. not only to imitate, but also to actually create antisemitic and hateful images.
DECKER: There's this weird fusion that began to occur in which actual Hamas propaganda started to aesthetically blend with antisemitic tropes and memes that have been on 4chan for years.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): The threats are serious and drawing the attention of law enforcement. In this document obtained by CNN, the Department of Homeland Security warns that U.S. hate groups continue to call for violence or celebrating attacks on the Jewish community, and that they could use the Hamas attacks as an inspiration to fight.
ALL: Go home, Nazis. Go home, Nazis.
O'SULLIVAN (voice-over): Real pro-Palestine protesters made it clear to us, they don't want anything to do with these hate groups.
(ON-CAMERA): Neo-Nazi hate groups showing up to demonstrations like this. How does that make you feel?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it's horrible. I think it fully derails the entire movement.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: White supremacist opportunists who are using the Palestinian cause as a vehicle for their prejudice are not welcome. The Palestinian freedom movement stands against all forms of hatred against anti-Jewish hatred just as we stand against all forms of racism.
COOPER: I mean, Donie joins us now. Going into an election year, all these fake voices, fake images, I mean, it's going to be a mess.
O'SULLIVAN: A real mess. And, I mean, look, you remember a few months ago we had a bit of fun using a voice generation to the A.I., made it sound like I was you.
O'SULLIVAN: It's -- you know, and these things can be used for fun. But I really think the combination of Elon Musk and you saw what he said yesterday, him, his position at X and the mess that that platform is. Meta the past few days have announced it's emerged that they are going to take money, they're going to allow ads of campaigns saying the 2020 election was rigged in the lead up to 2024. You have all this A.I. stuff. I really does feel like we are on the precipice going into 2024 of just a misinformation mess. COOPER: Yes. Donie O'Sullivan, thank you. We'll be right back.
COOPER: That's it for us. The news continues. "THE SOURCE WITH KAITLAN COLLINS" starts now. See you tomorrow.