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Don Lemon Tonight
Coach Belichick Refuses To Accept Award From The White House; Trump And Pence Spoke After Days Of Silence; Trump Against All Odds; Law Enforcement Geared Up For Possible Nationwide Attacks; Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) Is Interviewed About Her Take On Congress' Move To Impeach Trump; Rep. Colin Allred (D-TX) Is Interviewed About Why He Wants Trump To Be Impeached; Seventeen Law Enforcement Officers Being Investigated. Aired 10-11p ET
Aired January 11, 2021 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MARY TRUMP, PRESIDENT TRUMP'S NIECE: And Republicans in Congress are the only people who can do that. And yet, instead of doing that, what are they doing? They're putting it all on Democrats and telling the Democrats that they're the ones --
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST (on camera): Right.
M. TRUMP: -- who need to call for unity and, I guess, just let bygones be bygones?
CUOMO: I don't know.
M. TRUMP: Donald incited an armed insurrection against his own government in the process of which a capitol police officer was killed. What else did they need to see have happen?
CUOMO: Obvious more because they're still playing the game. But you never happen --
M. TRUMP: They're going to get it.
CUOMO: And I appreciate your perspective. Mary Trump, be well.
M. TRUMP: Thank you. You, too, Chris.
CUOMO: All right. I'm late. let me get to the big show "CNN TONIGHT" with D. Lemon. Don, you know, not Congress but it was one kind of leader who took a stand today. The head of a football coach no irony named the Patriots --
DON LEMON, CNN HOST: Bill Belichick.
CUOMO: Bill Belichick said awesome opportunity to get the Medal of Freedom. The highest civilian honor there is. I'm not going to take it.
LEMON: I'm glad he didn't.
CUOMO: Not as an American.
LEMON: Finally, finally though, I'm glad he did it for all the people who have been -- listen, Bill Belichick, football, a whole different thing, whatever. But for all the people who have been making excuses for President Trump, shame on you. Shame on you for the last however many years. Shame on you. You were warned.
And I got to tell you, Chris, I didn't see you this weekend, I know I was supposed to come over and hang out with you. I spent the whole weekend -- you know how I feel about this, kind of, because we covered it together. I spent almost all weekend in bed in a state of depression, pretty much. The more I saw of this video -- because we were in the middle of it, reporting on it. You don't get a chance to absorb it, right, the way that just sit back and just look at it.
The more it started coming across on my phone, the more I started watching TV, it got worse and worse and worse. Our worst fears were realized, our worst fears. It was the worst of the worst. We saw people who had been talking about, we support law enforcement, blue lives matter, and they're beating a police officer with a blue lives matter flag.
Support the flag, you shouldn't be kneeling, respect the flag. And they're beating police officers with a damn American flag. What is wrong -- and then you have those two lawyers who come on TV and they try to make -- try to make excuses for this man.
Listen, under the American Constitution he has every right to a defense, as you know. But what do you think, we're Boo Boo the fool? We are not Sam sausage head and Susie sausage head where we have -- where we think you can pull one over on us and say that's not who he is. Yes, it is. He's there, not in black and white, in color, smiling with a lectern, in a place that he wasn't supposed to be.
They didn't -- if I walked into Macy's after I leave here tonight and it says on the door that it's closed, and I happen to find one door that's open and I go in, I'm not supposed to be there even if the door was open.
LEMON: I'm going to -- I'm going to face the repercussions for that.
CUOMO: Yes. So is he.
LEMON: Yes. And so, I cannot believe. Do not insult the American's people -- the American people's intelligence by saying, well, this isn't who he is, he's a great whatever. No, he was there.
LEMON: He wasn't one of the people who said, I should not go into the capitol.
LEMON: This is not where -- he went in with the crowd.
CUOMO: And he's got triple charges. And I think he's going to have a problem. Their argument is he's not one of the worst. That's fine. It may work, it may not.
CUOMO: My point is he's lucky he's got his wife's money to pay for a defense like that. Those guys are the real deal.
CUOMO: If he was defending himself or getting some other kind of lawyer, he may not be getting as sophisticated a chance of options that he has. Here's my concern. I wanted that guy because of that picture --
CUOMO: -- and because he has become a symbol with a smile on his face that something should be disgusting. That's not his lawyer. His lawyer is there to pretend to defend his rights, they're not there to answer for him as a person.
CUOMO: But I'll tell you what, these people get a hell of a lot worse than that guy in terms of why they're doing this. And I know, as well as you know, a lot of people who are in the business of smoking out threats for us --
CUOMO: -- and they are scared s-less, OK?
CUOMO: They have so much check from so many who feel so empowered and all these groups that they used to have to dig for are now just popping up on platforms.
LEMON: That guy feels just as empowered -- I don't buy that. Because you know what my black -- my black butt would never have been in that capitol, you know why? Because I think I believe that police would beat the crap out of me. Those guys did not believe that police were going to beat the crap out of them.
CUOMO: And they didn't.
LEMON: And they didn't.
CUOMO: Yes. LEMON: That's the whole point. That's why it's so frustrating to me. There are different systems of justice, and if that guy had been -- do you think a black guy would be on TV saying something?
LEMON: Come on. Let's be real.
CUOMO: He may have been on TV, but he wouldn't have been getting treated that way.
LEMON: Wait those -- probably could not afford those, for the most part, that type of attorney.
CUOMO: I wouldn't want to be a black guy in the middle of that crowd of rioters.
CUOMO: Who knows what the cops would have done to you.
LEMON: Or a journalist or even a woman. Because they did all of that. All those tough guys -- CUOMO: Right.
LEMON: -- and who did they let die? The woman amongst them died. Think about that. The woman got killed. They couldn't even protect their own women in that crowd.
CUOMO: But listen, here's my big concern, OK? We know that the politicians Rubio, other big names, they're either hiding or they're coming out and treating this like it's a comedy, like this is the latest in a series, they'll compare it to what happened over the summer which is a complete --
LEMON: No, they're talking about something that's B.S. which is --
CUOMO: I know, but hold on a second.
LEMON: -- censorship and the first amendment have nothing to do with it.
CUOMO: Here's my concern. They're playing typical games, they're the victim, OK?
CUOMO: This isn't over. And until people like Rubio and those guys stop talking their B.S. and own how wrong this was, the politicians are useless. I'm telling you, this is going to turn into a law enforcement national security situation that is going to be busting out in pockets all over the country.
LEMON: Well --
CUOMO: And yes, Trump is a big part of this, but he didn't do it alone, and this is not going to be the end, Don.
LEMON: He did not do it alone.
CUOMO: And that scares me a lot.
LEMON: But let me tell you, every one, -- yes, I'm angry. Everyone should be angry by this. Everyone should be holding their -- the lawmakers' feet to the fire, holding them accountable, including Trump, including Marco Rubio, including Ted Cruz, including Josh Hawley. Including, as a matter of fact, Pat Toomey who is now saying, well, you know, the president -- but he also said in the same breath that, Trump has never exhibited this type of behavior.
CUOMO: That's their new riff. He changed.
LEMON: Where have you been?
CUOMO: Mulvaney. He's different now.
LEMON: He is not --
CUOMO: No, you're different because you got caught when you release the crocket.
CUOMO: Now you're scared. And here's the proof of it, Don. If they were acting in good faith, OK. If you and I were at a scene and said, people need to come down here right now. This is a gross injustice. People should come down here and gather right now. And then if people came all angry about what we're talking about --
CUOMO: -- we wouldn't run.
CUOMO: We asked them to come.
CUOMO: These people all ran and hid because they knew what they were playing with.
LEMON: You know how you hold your lawmakers accountable? You call them out and then you went -- next time you vote you get to decide who you vote for and you vote them out.
CUOMO: We don't have much time.
CUOMO: This is happening now.
LEMON: Well, I believe in the American people. And I believe in our democracy. And I think that people will face the consequences of this. And I don't believe that this is censorship, and I don't believe that anybody has any right to any sort of platform, especially when it is a private entity. That is not censorship, that has nothing to do -- nothing at all to do with the first amendment. The first amendment has to do with the Congress.
CUOMO: It doesn't allow you, as a Supreme Court justice said, the first amendment is not designed to allow you to scream fire in a crowded theater.
LEMON: Yes. Well, that's --
CUOMO: And that's what this is.
LEMON: Well, that's -- well, I don't know if it's equivalent to that. And I hope --
CUOMO: Telling them to calm down --
LEMON: You can actually -- well, Chris, you are an attorney.
CUOMO: -- go after them, don't let him certify?
LEMON: You know that you can actually scream crowd -- fire in a crowded theater, that's a misnomer. But we don't want to get into that.
CUOMO: If you do and then people get hurt, you're going to jail.
LEMON: Well, maybe.
CUOMO: No, that's the law. It doesn't allow you to do whatever you want.
LEMON: It's not -- it's not really the law.
CUOMO: You have a right to say whatever you want.
LEMON: That was overturned, too, that whole -- I don't want to get into that because it's too far --
CUOMO: I'm not talking about hate speech or what's protected.
LEMON: I know but --
CUOMO: All I'm saying is this.
LEMON: I looked it up all day.
CUOMO: You can't incite riots.
LEMON: That's not the crowd. The fire in a crowded theater is not a thing. It's a misnomer. Trust me. Check it out.
CUOMO: No, it was (Inaudible) from a Supreme Court case about the extent --
LEMON: That was overturned.
CUOMO: -- of what it protects as speech versus action.
LEMON: OK, yes. OK.
CUOMO: I'm just saying is this.
LEMON: I got to go, that's what I'm saying.
CUOMO: I'm just saying this. People are watching your show tonight --
LEMON: Yes, I know.
CUOMO: -- because of you, as always, but also because they're afraid about what's going to happen next, and they should be.
LEMON: They should be afraid because according to some, it may have been an inside job. The calls may have been coming from inside the House, and that is a scary proposition.
CUOMO: Attacks in all 50 states are being planned.
LEMON: I got to run.
CUOMO: Maybe they're just successful on one or two. I'll be watching.
LEMON: Thank you, sir.
CUOMO: I love you, D. Lemon.
LEMON: I love you as well. Yes, this is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon.
I am mad, and you should be mad, too. Because I want to know, does any -- does anyone out there feel safe in our democracy tonight? Considering everything that you've heard today from the FBI, from law enforcement, from people who have been arrested and the people who are suspected.
Sadly, some of them, police officers themselves, law enforcement. They were heroes but law enforcement are human beings as well. The FBI is warning that there could be armed insurrection in all 50 states.
The current president is hiding in the White House. He's bitter over his loss. He's showing absolutely no remorse for the insurrection that he incited. And on the verge of becoming the only president in our history to be impeached twice, that's who he is.
He also met with Mike Pence in the Oval Office today, the first time that they have spoken in five days since the president incited that attack on Capitol Hill, and he did it on the capitol.
An attack that put Pence and his family in danger. So, did the president and vice president discuss at the time an unprecedented -- I should say at a time of unprecedented national crisis? What did they discuss?
They tried to sweep the whole thing under the rug with the absurd claim that the rioters who were encouraged to march to the capitol by the president had nothing to do with Trump's supporters. Wow. I guess not, because those signs are not Trump signs. Nope. Not at all. You're not seeing. Don't believe your eyes.
They marched from a Trump rally, they were carrying Trump flags, they were wearing Trump hats. And Trump all kind of regalia. Yet a source is telling CNN that the vice president feels that he made his point. He made his point. These rioters chanted, hang Mike Pence.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CROWD: Hang Mike Pence! Hang Mike Pence! Hang Mike Pence! Hang Mike Pence! Hang Mike Pence! Hang Mike Pence!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): There could be more of the same in the days ahead with armed protests planned at all 50 state capitols in Washington, D.C. from January 16th to inauguration day. As far as what happened on January 6th, the more we see from that terrible day -- look at that. They were, heave, ho, heave, ho. The worse it gets.
An out-of-control mob of Trump supporters battling police desperately trying to hold them back.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN: Get out.
UNKNOWN: OK! OK! OK! OK!
UNKNOWN: Guys, we need more back up. OK!
UNKNOWN: Back off! Back off! Back off! Back off!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): And then there is this stomach-turning moment, a police officer being stomped on, beaten with -- you got it -- an American flag. Assaulted hours after rioters began clashing with police at almost the same time the president released that video telling his supporters who stormed the capitol, we love you.
Well, tonight this is one of the men authorities want to talk to, and they want your help, asking anybody who can identify him to contact Metropolitan Police Department, the Metropolitan Police Department. And there are more warnings from the FBI, threats to harm President- elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris and the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi. With just nine days to go until inauguration day.
Joe Biden says he's not afraid to take the oath of office outside.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I'm not afraid of taking the oath outside, and we've been briefed, but I think it's critically important that there be a real serious focus on holding those folks who engaged in sedition and threatened people's lives, defaced public property, caused great damage, that they be held accountable. And I think that's a view that's held by a vast majority of Democrats and Republicans in the Congress.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): I respect what you're saying, Mr. President-elect, but -- I don't know if I would because this is not over yet. This is about how we prevent the unthinkable from happening again. If you weren't ready for it before, you sure as hell need to be ready now. I'm talking about you out there watching.
And what is our government doing to keep us safe? What are they doing? Who is the government anymore, anyway? And why should we have any faith in this administration when they seem more worried about optics and about papering over what we all saw happened and the president.
The New York Times Maggie Haberman reports that he's more upset about the PGA taking it ball and its club and going home depriving him of hosting its 2022 championship at his Bedminster golf club. And he is not going to like this either, right? Because New England Patriots head coach as we just mentioned, Bill Belichick says he is declining the Presidential Medal of Freedom that Trump was set to give him on Thursday.
Belichick says what he calls the tragic events of last week led to his decision.
Of course, what really enrage this president was being permanently banned though from Twitter. So just listen to this exchange on Fox News yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL HEMMER, ANCHOR, FOX NEWS: With the social media crackdown, does he feel emasculated especially as he heads out of office?
UNKNOWN: Look, I wouldn't say emasculated. I mean, the most masculine person I think to ever the White House is the President of the United States.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): I've heard a lot of pathetic things from this White House. This one really takes the cake. A big tough guy who incited a riot and then hid in the White House for five days and still refuses to take responsibility. He's the president of the United States. He's the most masculine -- come on, man, shut up. Shut up.
He is the biggest snowflake of them all, the biggest one. I don't want to hear about your feelings. Give me facts and not feelings. Why are you coddling his feelings all the time? Why are you coddling all of these people's feelings? We need to understand how they feel. How they feel, they need to accept -- give him time to accept the election. Really? Who is the snowflake now?
Like the guy with the horns now whose mom reportedly said, well, he can't, he's not eating because they won't serve him an all-organic meal in the lock-up, snowflakes, cowards. The president's legacy will be not the most masculine president, but the biggest loser we have ever had as president. Maybe that should have been the name of his show instead of "The Apprentice," the biggest loser.
Look where he has led the Republican Party, look where he has led this country. Look where we are right now. This country is in flames. Along with his enablers, of course, he's done it, because he's had a lot of enablers. There's Senator Josh Hawley who wanted to be the poster child for American values.
Hallmark now wants him to return their campaign donation and another Republican colleague, to him and another Republican colleague. A spokesperson saying Hallmark believes the peaceful transition of power is part of the bedrock of our Democratic system, and we abhor violence of any kind.
The translation in that, do you want to know what the translation in that is? Hallmark hears enough to send its very best message to you, Josh Hawley, that's what it means. And Susan Collins. Susan Collins. Susan, I'm very concerned, Susan Collins. Very concerned but then voted for the worst. Almost every time voted right along with this president, but now she's very concerned. She's been very concerned all the time.
The senator telling the Bangor Daily News while she was trapped in the capitol, quote, I called and texted my closest contact at the White House to urge the president to immediately tell the rioters to stop their violence and go home. But President Donald Trump completely undercut that message by repeating his grievances and telling the rioters that he knew how they felt. This was terrible, especially since he incited them in the first place.
You don't say, Susan Collins. So much for the valuable lesson she said that he learned from impeachment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. SUSAN COLLINS (R-ME): I believe that the president has learned from this case.
NORAH O'DONNELL, ANCHOR, CBS NEWS: What do you believe the president has learned?
COLLINS: The president has been impeached. That's a pretty big lesson.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): Senator Pat Toomey says it wasn't just his job to be editor of the president's Twitter feed.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. PAT TOOMEY (R-PA): He descended into a level of madness and engaged in activity that was just absolutely unthinkable and unforgivable. For four years he often put out offensive and objectionable tweets, actually sometimes dozens a day. I never felt and I still don't think that my job was to be his -- the editor of his Twitter feed, although I was very often critical. But, you know, this raises the question of why did 75 million people vote for this man whose character flaws were always very apparent?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): Because people like you and the like carried his water and told lies, allowed the lies to spread. That's why. Senator, nobody asked you to be the editor of the president's Twitter feed, the one he has been permanently barred from, the one he is whining about, about how they've taken away his freedom of speech.
The fact is these are private companies. They have no obligation to have anyone on their platforms. These are decisions that have nothing to do with Congress, except perhaps for people trying to kill them.
Think about it this way. If they're going to espouse freedom of speech, right, being taken away, perhaps this will help you understand if you frame it in that manner if you frame it in the freedom of religion argument that you use so much.
Twitter and Amazon and the like, they are the Christian bakery. OK? Trump is the gay couple who wants a gay wedding cake, first amendment. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, or of the right of the people peaceably to assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. That's what it says.
It says nothing about Twitter or social media, the Congress. Don't get it twisted. Stop using that argument. It makes no sense. And then there is Senator Roy Blunt who still thinks the president learned his lesson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. ROY BLUNT (R-MO): My personal view is that the president touched the hot stove on Wednesday and is unlikely to touch it again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): They will never learn, even as Senator Lindsey Graham telling the Washington Post this, the president saw these people as allies in his journey and sympathetic to the idea that the election was stolen.
The president looked at these people on live TV. We saw a mob. He saw allies. What more do you need to know? But there is a lesson that we can learn from a true American hero. U.S. Capitol Police Officer Eugene Goodman. Rioters chased that officer up several flights of stairs. What happened next caught on tape. Officer Goodman glances to his left. He sees there are no police guarding the Senate chamber, then manages to lure the rioters in the opposite direction, saving everybody still inside the Senate chamber.
And that's what I call a hero. I only wish the people who -- the people who you protect were proving themselves worthy of your service, officer. So, the question tonight is, do you feel safe in our democracy, with the FBI warning of threats of armed insurrection in all 50 states with the nation still reeling from the violence we saw at the capitol last week. Do you feel safe?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICK MULVANEY, FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: Wednesday was different. Wednesday was existential. Wednesday was something that struck the very heart of what it means to be an American, and it was wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON (on camera): Tonight, sources telling CNN President Trump and Vice President Pence spoke for the first time since last Wednesday's deadly riot at the capitol, a riot incited by Trump. Let's remember Pence was inside the capitol presiding over the joint session of Congress as the chaos broke out.
I want to bring in now CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins and CNN justice correspondent Evan Perez. Good evening to both of you. Thank you so much for joining. I'm so happy two of my colleagues are safe considering what could have been so -- I'm just so thankful to see all of you who work in Washington, and thank you for doing what you do.
Kaitlan, I'm going to start with you. The president incited the Capitol Hill insurrection where we heard chants to hang Mike Pence. We heard it over and over. What are you learning about President Trump and Vice President Pence tonight?
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think what the most remarkable thing about all of this is that they went this long without speaking. From last Wednesday when that riot broke out until today, they have not spoken, and that's probably the longest stretch of their entire relationship since Vice President Pence was actually named as the vice-presidential running mate back in 2015 that this was something that had gone on. Because it just is unusual for their relationship. They often speak several times a day.
So, Don, we're learning tonight they did meet in the Oval Office today. We're told by the White House that during this conversation they agreed to serve out the remainder of their term. Of course, that comes after several Republicans, including on CNN, had called for the president to step down before his term is up a week, a little over a week from today.
And so, that's not going to be happening, but I think the other thing this signals is people who were hoping that Mike Pence was going to get the cabinet together and invoke the 25th amendment, this seems to be a pretty clear sign to add to our reporting that he is not going to do that. But it is remarkable they went that long without speaking given, as you noted, Pence was up there as that was going on and the president never called to check in on him.
LEMON: Evan, Capitol Hill attack. I mean, it was, to say the least, horrifying. And now there is a disturbing FBI bulletin obtained by CNN warning of armed protests at all 50 state capitols and Washington, D.C. leading up to the inauguration. What do you know about that, Evan?
EVAN PEREZ, CNN SENIOR JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Look, Don, I think the chatter that law enforcement is getting, is off the charts. And what you're seeing from the FBI is frankly something that they did not do before Wednesday. There were all kinds of indications, including on social media, that things could get violent. They knew that there were certain people who were planning to come who were known to be associated with groups that are known for violence, and there was no such -- nothing like this that had gone out across the country.
There were a bunch of regional type of warnings. And so, what they're doing is being proactive because this is for real, that there are these types of threats all around the country. In all 50 states, you're going to see these types of -- these types armed protests. Some of them might get violent. And so, I think they needed to make sure that law enforcement was ready for it.
LEMON: All right, thank you both. I appreciate you both joining us this evening.
They were there when the riots broke out at the capitol and they've got different opinions on who to hold accountable, to who to hold to account and how. That's next.
LEMON (on camera): House Democrats are formally introducing their impeachment resolution earlier today charging President Trump with incitement of insurrection. With an impeachment vote plan for Wednesday, Trump could become the first president ever to be impeached twice.
Joining me now is Congressman Colin Allred from Texas. Congressman, it's good to see you. Happy New Year to you. I'm glad that you're OK. Thanks for joining.
REP. COLIN ALLRED (D-TX): Thank you for having me, Don. I wish we were talking under better circumstances.
LEMON: Absolutely. And you're 100 percent right. It looks like there will be an impeachment vote on Wednesday, you support it, so what do you say to the many Republicans who say it's too late or it's too divisive, that we need unity right now?
ALLRED: Right. Well, let's be very clear. This is one of the worst attacks on our democracy in our history. Not in our modern history, in our total history. The Capitol of the United States was attacked by a mob of the supporters directed by the President of the United States who called them there and who sent them there.
And there has to be accountability for that. Not just for this moment in our history, but for 100 years from now and for every democracy that follows us, we have to show that when you do something like this, there are results and there are consequences.
LEMON: So, two -- I have to ask you, two capitol officers, two police officers, capitol police officers were suspended, including the officer who took that selfie with a member of the violent mob as many as 17 are under investigation, according to a House aide. Do you worry people in the ranks may be complicit?
ALLRED: Well, I also saw another side, because I was on the House floor, Don. And I saw capitol police risking their lives to try and save our lives. And the two officers that we lost certainly risked their lives to save our lives. We've all seen the image of that capitol police officer who led that mob away from the Senate chamber.
And so while there may be some who didn't do their duty that day, the vast, vast majority did. And I'm speaking with you right now because they did.
LEMON: Listen, I agree with you. It's just shocking. They were heroes, and if you look at the video of the officers holding the line and protecting people, and that officer, one officer leading them away from the chamber, you are 100 percent right, but it is disturbing to think that 17 are under investigation and two capitol police officers are suspended and the who is one taking the selfie. Police officers are human and they're fallible, but you're right, the vast majority are heroes.
Thank you very much. I appreciate you joining. I'll see you soon. Thank you. Next, the Republican congresswoman who --
ALLRED: Thanks for having me.
LEMON: -- is speaking out against the president's role of inciting the riot -- inciting the riot, I should say, but does she think impeachment is the answer?
LEMON (on camera): House Democrats planning an impeachment vote for Wednesday, but will the GOP ever hold this president accountable for his actions? Will they?
Joining me now is Congresswoman Nancy Mace from South Carolina. Congresswoman, it's good to see you again. Thank you so much for joining.
REP. NANCY MACE (R-SC): Hi. Good evening.
LEMON: Again, I'm so happy that you are safe, really are. So, you are speaking out against what the president did, but you're also asking President-elect Biden to step in and stop the impeachment efforts against President Trump.
LEMON: Why is that, congresswoman?
MACE: Well, I mean, the House of Representatives, the House has every right to impeach the President of the United States, but he's going to be gone in a week's time. When the House, not really if, it's really just a matter of when. When this is voted on, when the House sends articles of impeachment over, the Senate is not even going to get them until January 19th, and January 20th is when Joe Biden will be sworn in as president, and I do believe that this is going to distract from us from trying to rebuild our country.
We need a fresh start. We need a peaceful start. And as you mentioned earlier on the program, there are threats of violence. It sounds like January 17th is a potential day. But also, I really worry about the inauguration as well, and if a partisan -- rushed partisan impeachment effort over the next few days causes more division, it's like throwing gasoline on a fire.
And I don't think anybody wants 100 days of Trump. We don't want to be a to be continued. I think we all want this to be over. We want the era of trump to be over and we want to move on. There is a bipartisan and bicameral effort that I'm receiving. In fact, while we run the commercial break, I just received another copy of a different censure document that is being supported by Republicans and Democrats. There are multiple documents floating around, but the question is,
will the Speaker, Nancy Pelosi allow a censure to be voted on in the House of Representative this week. And we're being told no. That is a bipartisan effort --
LEMON: So, do you think that's what -- you think the accountability would be a censure instead of impeachment? Because people -- people, you can understand Americans.
LEMON: Americans want accountability and that includes a heck of a lot of Republicans --
MACE: I do.
LEMON: -- in the country as well.
MACE: It does, and we've got -- and I've been a very strong as you know very vocal and very outspoken against members of my own party. I think it's really important that we acknowledge the problem, that we take responsibility for the problem and we find solutions.
And I'm willing to work across the aisle. I want to have a fresh start on January 20th. I will work with the Biden administration on ways to do that. There are a lot of mixed feelings about a rushed and partisan impeachment, what that means to due process and the Constitution. The same reasons that we all voted to affirm and certify the Electoral College, there are questions about rushing an impeachment without due process.
And so, the Constitution is our guiding principle, but there are folks in both the Senate and in the House, Republicans and Democrats, who are trying to find a bipartisan measure, but we're hearing that the speaker won't take it up. That's the problem with this. I think people are tired of the partisanship. We really -- this is a time to work together. I really and truly believe that.
LEMON: OK. So, speaking of, a lot of Republicans are calling for unity, but who exactly are Democrats --
LEMON: -- supposed to unify with? The terrorists who stormed the capitol? The Republicans who stoked the election fraud lie? Like, so, where does unity come in, Congresswoman?
MACE: Well, I think it comes from people who are willing to work together to find places to work together. It's Republicans that are saying this is wrong, and there are a number of us, and so we have denounced this. We need to do more, and I've taken it upon myself to even take it up with members of my own party.
I didn't know what QAnon really was before last Wednesday, and I've spent a lot of time over last week educating myself. And it is insane. And when I look at what we did in the chamber, after the violence, after the anarchy on Wednesday night that we allowed QAnon conspiracy theorists to lead us on this charade to try to object and overturn the results of the Electoral College, I'm baffled, I'm disappointed, I'm saddened and I'm anger over it.
MACE: I'm doing as much as I can to hold myself, my colleagues, my party accountable. It's really important that we acknowledge what happened here and that we don't deny that fact then we try to work together to move forward.
LEMON: Listen, you are -- you don't need my advice because you're a grown woman.
LEMON: But I will tell you, and obviously you don't need my advice, but don't change. Continue to go on --
LEMON: -- every single network and continue to be the voice of reason that you are. And I really love that you come on and you are very candid, and you take -- you take tough questions. And I have to say people --
MACE: I'm happy to.
LEMON: People will say, you know, it seems like the calls for unity always go one way. OK? That's what people are saying.
LEMON: Shouldn't it be on you and other reasonable Republicans like you to show that a president cannot incite a mob that wants to kill his own vice president --
LEMON: -- and get off scot-free, Congresswoman?
MACE: Yes. We all want to have him be held accountable, but I also want the president, not just the president. You read the transcripts. You watch the videos of the speeches. I understand that a member of my party was tweeting, was live tweeting location information of other members of Congress.
I mean, this is very problematic and we have to admit and take responsibility for it. And I take it personally because I am a member of Congress. I had to send my kids home last week early, and thank God that they weren't there to witness what happened. But I worry about my children's future, I worry about my country, and I want to do what's right, but it is incumbent upon us as Republicans and also Democrats when they see a Republican who is saying, hey, let's work together, let's try and do something, that they do reach out.
And I have heard from Democrats this week, I've heard from Republicans who all feel the same way. I's still hopeful, but it's going to take a hell of a lot of work to get there.
LEMON: I am very grateful that you continue to come on. And we don't always have to agree.
LEMON: Or whatever. That's the whole point of it.
MACE: Yes, we don't.
LEMON: Right? Isn't it?
LEMON: That's the whole point of it. So, thank you. You be safe.
MACE: The American experiment, Don. We going to agree and disagree as long as we're not attacking each other.
LEMON: Yes, I -- thank you.
LEMON: I agree 155 percent.
MACE: Thank you.
LEMON: Thank you so much. I'll see you soon.
MACE: Thank you.
LEMON: Several officers suspended, as many as 17 more being investigated, and the FBI is warning of more armed protests to come. The former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe is going to weigh on the investigation into the capitol riots, and he's next.
LEMON (on camera): The FBI issuing an alarming bulletin tonight warning, armed protests are being planned at all 50 state capitols and Washington, D.C. in the days leading up to the inauguration. Officials are also tracking reports of threats to harm President-elect Joe Biden, the Vice-President-elect, Kamala Harris, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Let's discuss. Former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe is here. Thank you, Andrew, for joining tonight. The FBI warning of armed protests, all 50 states -- state capitols, and Washington, D.C. In your long career in counterterrorism, you say you have never seen an FBI bulletin this broad and serious. How worried should we be?
ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: We should be very worried. As you said, Don, never have I seen a bulletin that put people on notice of the potential of armed protests at 50 different locations at once. That is extraordinary, and I can assure you that based on my deep experience working with these people, they are not prone to exaggeration and hyperbole. If they said 50 state capitols it means they have information that substantiates that concern. And that should concern every one of us deeply.
LEMON: The reporting from The Washington Post is that a Secret Service officer was put under investigation after posting comments on Facebook accusing lawmakers who formalized Biden's win of treason. She also expressed support for the rioters who stormed the capitol. Can someone like this work in the Secret Service moving forward?
MCCABE: Well, you know, I'm sure the Secret Service will be taking a hard look at that. I can't imagine how you could maintain those sorts of beliefs, especially about the incoming president and also maintain your position in the Secret Service. But obviously that's a personnel matter I'll let them resolve.
You know, look, Don, it's not a surprise that, you know, there's a lot of -- in the law enforcement community, in the military community, there are a lot of people who are of more conservative political beliefs. And that's fine. That's, you know, part of being an American and having opinions. But when you drift into that level of extremism where you're embracing the lies that the president and his supporters on the hill have been putting out about the election, absolute falsehoods, and you've come under the sway of that persuasion, I mean, that is a really dangerous prospect.
MCCABE: And it's one that I think we're going to have to live with and figure out how to deal with for a long time.
LEMON: CNN has obtained video showing rioters brutally attacking a police officer, stomping on him, hitting him with a flag pole. The D.C. attorney general says he's looking at charging President Trump for inciting this kind of violence at the capitol. Is that realistic and what kind of charges could he face?
MCCABE: Well, I certainly hope it's realistic. You know, it's about time that President Trump is held responsible for his illegal activity. I mean, let's remember, this is now the third time in this administration that we are considering that the president may have violated criminal laws, that in and of itself is extraordinary.
But on these facts are particularly egregious. You could easily make a case for incitement. Federal law prohibits someone from inciting or from persuading another person to commit a violent felony or a conspiracy to, a seditious conspiracy is certainly qualify as a violent felony.
With President Trump and his statements leading up to the rally, summoning this group to the rally on January 6th, standing before them, making the statements that he did, telling me them we're going to march to the capitol, telling them that he was going to join them, and all for the purpose of delaying the certification of the Electoral College votes.
I think you have a compelling set of facts here. It's a long shot anytime you think about charging a president or a former president, but I think it's something that prosecutors should look at very closely.
LEMON: Yes. And all of it on a lie. All of it on a lie. It's unbelievable. Are you surprised, Andrew --
MCCABE: On a lie.
LEMON: -- that there still -- that there still hasn't been a press conference on the insurrection from the U.S. Capitol police, the FBI, the Justice Department, Homeland Security Department? The president?
MCCABE: I am. You know, Don, I learned from many, from the unfortunate experience of having managed many crisis situations, responses to terrorist attacks or mass shootings and things, you learn over time that one of the first things you have to do is get out in front of the messaging. You have to reassure the public that you're on top of it, that you're moving the investigation forward.
I mean, you saw that kind of action from the FBI in response to the Nashville bombing, you know, just last month. So, the fact that they haven't done it yet is concerning to me. It's a questionable way to handle, you know, a crisis response situation, and I certainly hope that we see our folks from the bureau and the Department of Justice out there answering questions and sharing information in the way that we'd expect.
LEMON: I hope you are right. The police departments there, let the heroic officers speak. Let them speak. Let them tell their stories about what happened. They need to. America needs to hear that and needs to hear --
MCCABE: That's right.
LEMON: -- from them. Andrew, thank you so much. I appreciate it.
MCCABE: Yes. Thanks, Don.
LEMON: The acting homeland security chief resigning today as the FBI warns of more armed riots throughout the country. Stay with us.