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Wray Provides Testimony Regarding Foreign Terrorist Threats and Domestic Extremism; To Prevent Government Shutdown, House Passes a Bill; Senate Will Vote Next; Following Weeks of Tension, Threats and Insults Break Out in Congress; Interview with Rep. Victoria Spartz (R- IN); Israel-Hamas War; Found "Concrete Evidence" that Terrorists of Hamas had Headquarters at Al-Shifa Hospital, According to IDF; Israel Controls Al-Shifa Hospital, According to Hamas; Largest Hospital in Gaza Raided by IDF in "Targeted Operation"; Paul Pelosi Assault Trial Closing Arguments Begin Today; Assailant Acknowledges attacking Paul Pelosi, Claims Nancy Pelosi was the Primary Target. Aired 10:30-11a ET
Aired November 15, 2023 - 10:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SARA SIDNER, CNN NEWS CENTRAL CO-ANCHOR: As we speak, FBI Director Christopher Wray is testifying about the heightened threat here in the United States because of the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas. Wray says, the FBI is conducting multiple investigations into individuals affiliated with Hamas. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRISTOPHER WRAY, FBI DIRECTOR: Since October 7th, we've seen a rogue's gallery of foreign terrorist organizations call for attacks against Americans and our allies. Hezbollah expressed its support and praise for Hamas and threatened to attack U.S. interests in the Middle East. Given those calls for action, our most immediate concern is that individuals or small groups will draw twisted inspiration from the events in the Middle East to carry out attacks here at home.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SIDNER: Evan Perez joins me now from Washington. You've been watching this through. What stood out to you? I mean, he really talked about Hamas quite a bit during this speech, and it's -- that's still going, although now we're seeing Mayorkas talking right now.
EVAN PEREZ, CNN SENOR JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Sara. Look, I mean, I think one of the things that the FBI director has been very, very concerned about is the skyrocketing number of threats associated with, obviously, the events happening in Israel and Hamas, Israeli war. But also, the number of people who are now being threatened, Jewish Americans, Muslim Americans, Arab Americans, are all in the receiving end of these threats.
And what they talked about is a rogue's gallery of terror organizations. Everyone from Al Qaeda to ISIS to Hezbollah and Hamas have called for some attacks against Americans. And so, that's one of the concerns that he is most focused on as part of this hearing today, Sarah.
SIDNER: He talked about -- and that's the last thing we just heard from him, about some people associated with Hamas who were under investigation. Did -- was there any more clarity as to exactly what that meant? Was it money being given? Was it a relationship? What -- any more clarity on that?
PEREZ: Well, historically, one of the things he talks about is historically, Hamas has -- people associated with Hamas have been most focused on financing, raising money here in the United States to finance the organization. And the Hamas itself has been mostly focused on carrying attacks -- carrying out attacks in Israel. That is now something that is being reassessed by the FBI. He talked about that, still as something that the FBI is focused on, not only with Hamas, but other organizations as well.
SIDNER: Evan Perez, thank you so much for paying attention to all that, and we'll probably be checking back with you. Appreciate it.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN NEWS CENTRAL CO-ANCHOR: All right. The House of Representatives just voted to avert a government shutdown for now. But that wasn't all that happened on Capitol Hill. A former Speaker of the House was accused of elbowing a fellow congressman. The chair of the House Oversight Committee called a colleague a Smurf. And Senator Bernie Sanders had to stop a fight between a senator and a hearing witness.
I'm joined now by Congresswoman Victoria Spartz, a Republican from Indiana. Congresswoman, thank you so much for being with us. Have you heard any new reports of member-on-member violence yet today?
REP. VICTORIA SPARTZ (R-IN): Listen, I wish we would spend as much energy at governing how we do at fighting. I mean, healthy conversations are good, but, you know, just do -- go personal. It's probably not necessary, and it's really a waste of energy where we have real problems to deal with.
BERMAN: How do you explain what happened?
SPARTZ: Well, listen, I wasn't there. I'm assuming you're referring to Speaker McCarthy's situation. But if it is true, it's just probably, you know, it's not wise, you know. I know that Speaker McCarthy is frustrated, but ultimately, he was a speaker without having a vote. He had the opportunity to govern, and the Republicans didn't feel that, you know. Some of us thought he did a good job, and we have a new speaker now, and he has a big tax ahead of him, but we always hold our leaders accountable. I think, you know, Kevin needs to get over and just move on. BERMAN: You noted that you have a new speaker now and he's got a tough job ahead of him. You may not be making it any easier. You voted against the continuing resolutions yesterday to fund the government. You're not giving him much of a honeymoon, are you?
SPARTZ: Well, listen, we gave him some honeymoon, and I was willing to give him some time, you know, to deal with, you know, with our appropriations, but I was very disappointed that last second, he added the farm bill and actually punted it till the next fiscal year, till October. Because this is a very important bill where we need to look how we can improve competition and farm. It is health (ph) of Americans, how we can help smaller farmers, and also how we can have Americans healthier and have better food.
So, I think we need to think about things like that. And I was very disappointed that we decided upon this issue. And I was -- I don't think it was very wise. And I'm not sure if a lot of governing is going to be happening during the election next year.
BERMAN: There were actually more Democrats that voted for this than Republicans. Is this what you thought you were getting with a -- Speaker Mike Johnson?
SPARTZ: Listen, as I said, his honeymoon is probably over much faster than for Kevin, you know. And of course, you know, Democrats, you know, continue their, you know, spending their day legislating under Nancy Pelosi, so they should be pretty happy. But a lot of us were willing to give him some time, but we also wanted to move some other policy, or at least not add some other things that he shouldn't have done it, you know.
So, now I think it's going to be a big test for him. In the next few months, he will have to deliver on very serious issues, including on debt commission, including on border security and appropriations. And I hope we will find common ground and actually, Democrats will come on board because these are very important issues.
BERMAN: You say you hope, but do you think voters in Indiana and the rest of the country should be prepared for a government shutdown in January or February?
SPARTZ: Listen, unfortunately, no one wants to shut down this government, but this government needs serious reforms. So, I wouldn't worry about that. I would worry the level of spending. We're going to spend over a billion dollars in interest. We actually, in the next few years, we'll have to refinance pretty much half of our bonds at much higher rate. And what's happening with the economy and inflation, we might have a very, very serious fiscal issues.
And when we said, like, oh, our future generations children and grandchildren will have problems. No. Unfortunately, even we're going to have them right now. So, we have to become adults and start dealing with these issues. BERMAN: Have to become adults, as you say, perhaps the line that Congress should take is a lesson given the events of the last few days. Congresswoman Victoria Spartz from Indiana, we appreciate you being with us.
SPARTZ: Thank you. BERMAN: Kate.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN NEWS CENTRAL CO-ANCHOR: The great state of Indiana, that's the required way we refer to it.
Coming up --
BERMAN: Recuse. Recuse yourself.
BOLDUAN: Coming up for us, Israeli officials say that they have uncovered concrete evidence that Hamas has used al-Shifa Hospital as a terror headquarters. The very latest on the raids still underway at the medical complex. We'll be right back.
BOLDUAN: This morning, Israel says its raid on Al-Shifa Hospital has uncovered concrete evidence that Hamas has used the facility as a terror headquarters. Now, a senior official also saying that they will be publishing more details, including footage of this later today.
It's not just Israel, the White House is now reiterating that U.S. intelligence shows Hamas has a command center at Al-Shifa. That raid is still ongoing though, and Hamas just acknowledged that the hospital is now under Israeli control.
CNN's Oren Liebermann has more for us from Tel Aviv.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OREN LIEBERMANN, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: The Israeli military operation going into Shifa Hospital began early Wednesday morning, and at this point it has continued for the past 13 or so hours with no indication of how long it might take. The IDF has long accused Hamas of using Gaza's largest hospital, the Al-Shifa Hospital Complex, as a base for terror infrastructure, as a command-and-control center. A U.S. official coming out and saying they also have evidence and intelligence that that is what Hamas uses the hospital for.
A senior Israeli military official who briefed reporters says, they have evidence. Specifically showing Hamas uses Al-Shifa Hospital and they'll put that out, not at this point, but that's expected sometime later on today. The official said they've been preparing for this specific operation for a couple of weeks, and it required specialized training for the difficulties and the complexities of operating inside a hospital.
Israel went in with Arabic speakers to be able to communicate with the doctors, the officials, the patients, and the civilians. The hospital had been treating some 650 patients, and over the course of the past several days and weeks, had been home to thousands who were seeking shelter from the fighting outside.
This is also some video released from the IDF earlier today that shows them dropping off incubators, medical supplies and baby food. We have geolocated to Al-Shifa Hospital, but because we're not on the ground in Gaza, we cannot independently verify what's happening there because of the difficulties of reporting in Gaza at this time.
Meanwhile, there had been reports and we have spoken with officials at the hospital of ongoing fighting on the streets outside. The Israeli military says there had been no gunfights or exchanges of fire in the complex itself. They haven't been specific on where they're operating. Take a look at this map. This shows you how large the complex is. They say they're operating in a very specific part of the complex. That is where they're going after Hamas, but they won't be any more precise about where that is.
According to Israeli army radio, they have not found any evidence of hostages being held at Al-Shifa Hospital. That too, part of the ongoing effort of the Israeli military in Gaza.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Oren Liebermann on the ground for us in Tel Aviv, thank you.
SIDNER: All right. Ahead, closing arguments begin today in the federal trial for the man who admitted in court to attacking Former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband, Paul. The details on that, ahead.
BOLDUAN: Closing arguments begin today in the federal trial of the man accused of attacking Nancy Pelosi's husband. David DePape, he even took the stand, admitting that he did attack Paul Pelosi, but said Nancy Pelosi was his intended target. Also saying that he was, "Surprised and confused" when she wasn't there when he broke into the Pelosi's home in San Francisco. During the trial, Paul Pelosi detailed how he is still recovering from the injuries that he suffered in that hammer attack, which included a skull fracture.
CNN's Veronica Miracle is outside the courthouse for us. Veronica, what was it like with DePape in the courtroom? How did he act is in court and on the stand?
VERONICA MIRACLE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It was really interesting to observe, Kate. He actually got very emotional at some parts, started sobbing when talking about former President Donald Trump and the lies that he said the media spread about the former president. This is a man who is clearly enraptured by conspiracy theories. He talked about how 9/11 was an inside job, and other lies being spread by politicians in the media. He said that he learned all of this information by listening to political podcasts and videos from morning until night.
Another striking part of his testimony is that -- David DePape said, he actually felt remorse for hurting Paul Pelosi, that Paul was never his intended target. He was looking for Nancy, the former -- then House Speaker at the time, Nancy Pelosi. And was going to give her an opportunity to tell the truth about the lies, he said, she spread in the media or he would break her kneecaps. She wasn't home. And so, Paul ended up getting hurt. And he said, "I actually thought he was dead until I saw the charges against me and saw it was attempted murder." And apologized on the stand to Paul Pelosi for hurting him and saying, he was not his intended target.
So, both sides have now rested and closing arguments are expected to begin today. We expect this federal case -- this federal trial, rather, to end this week and then his state trial will begin later this month.
If convicted on charges for both state and federal -- and the -- both the state and federal cases, David DePape faces decades in prison. Kate.
BOLDUAN: Veronica Miracle. Thank you so much.
BERMAN: The Israeli military says, it has found concrete evidence of a Hamas terror headquarters inside Gaza's biggest hospital. What evidence they say they've uncovered, ahead.