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Don Lemon Tonight

President Trump Impeached Twice By The House; No Legal Fees For Rudy Giuliani?; Mitch McConnell Having Second Thoughts On Impeachment; No Remorse From President Trump; Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA) Is Interviewed About The Chaos That She Herself Experienced In Last Week's Attack; Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) Is Interviewed About The Extent Of The Information That Investigators Have Found On Last Week's Attack. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired January 13, 2021 - 22:00   ET


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: Right now, the answer is easy, right? The big show, "CNN TONIGHT," the big star, D. Lemon.


CUOMO: Right now.

LEMON: That's a good question, where do we go next? I have an idea.


And your talk with Phil Mudd was very important. And I think Phil is on to something.

CUOMO: What's the word he didn't say?

LEMON: Well, it's not --


CUOMO: About why you would feel one way about who attacked the capitol last week and another way if it were about ISIS or anything else.

LEMON: OK. So, here's a -- this is a -- this is a tough conversation for America. It says what happened in Washington, D.C. at the capitol on Wednesday was not about preserving some sort of conservative principle, you know, ideas. It's not about that.

What folks were fighting for in Washington today or against was not about preserving some conservative principle ideas. What happened on Wednesday at the capitol was about preserving whiteness. That's what this is about. This is the tough conversation that we must have. And preserving it in the worst possible way, which is white supremacy.

The people out there weren't fighting for, as I said, conservative principles. They were wearing Nazi insignia on their clothing. They were neo-Nazis. They were fascists or fascist supporters. They were members of groups that people in Washington should not be fighting for at this point. And we have to stop framing it and what they're trying to do, framing it in a political lens, because this is not about politics.

This is not about politics. This is about people who are there in Washington now and shamefully standing up for people who tried to take over the capitol because of terrible ideas, because of America. Because America, the foundation of America was built on racism and those people are trying to preserve that.

That -- this is not about politics. And so, I think we do ourselves a disservice because it's so easy to put it in that frame, because we can say, well, you know, it gives us -- it gives us an easy way out so that we don't have to have this, the tough talk about talking about the origins of this country.

CUOMO: Well, it depends on who the us is.

LEMON: You are.

CUOMO: You want a tough question?

LEMON: Yes, sure, go for it.

CUOMO: Here's the tough question that I've been hearing a little bit recently.

LEMON: But hang on, hang on, hang on. Let me finish then you can ask me the tough question.

So, I think that we got to get -- we -- in order to do ourselves - meaning the country - any good, we've got to get down to the nitty- gritty of what this is. And it is about what I said, and I stand by it, preserving whiteness in the worst possible way.

If you find yourself, Chris, in a crowd and the person next to you is carrying a confederate battle flag or the person next to you has on a neo-Nazi symbol of had some type or has on a camp Auschwitz, then in your mind wouldn't you say my goodness, I have made the wrong decision, I need to get out of here --

CUOMO: Unless I agreed with those ideas.

LEMON: -- or rethink --or rethink what I'm doing. So, stop saying, those people, everybody out there that wasn't -- they were there in the crowd with the same people in plain sight, in plain daylight. Go on.

CUOMO: So look, as a matter of fact we know that something about there being white extremist groups, which everybody's been told since 9/11, that we have to worry about here every bit as much as ISIS cells or Al Qaeda cells or whatever the latest bunch of extremists are from that world here, they've never cared as much as they did about when about they're Muslim Islamist extremists.

LEMON: Never.

CUOMO: Now what you hear is, well, you can't say that everybody who voted for Trump is like the people who went into the capitol. Response.

LEMON: You can't say that what? Everybody is like --


CUOMO: Everybody who voted for Trump is like them.

LEMON: No, I just explained to you, if you -- if you are on that side you need to think about the side you're on. I'm never on the side of the Klan. I am never -- principled people, conservative or liberal never on the Klan side, principled people, conservative or liberal, never on the Nazi side.

Principled people who are conservative or liberal, never on the side that treats their fellow Americans as less than, that says that your fellow Americans should not exist, that said your -- that says your fellow Americans should be in a concentration camp or that sides with slavery or sides with any sort of bigotry.

CUOMO: Right. And if they say I don't agree with those people, I just like Trump's policies.

LEMON: Well, then get out of the crowd with him. Get out of the crowd with him.

CUOMO: I wasn't in the crowd. I just voted for Trump.

LEMON: You're in the crowd who voted for Trump. If you voted for Trump you voted for the person who the Klan supported. You voted for the person who Nazis support. You voted for the person who the alt-right supports. That's the crowd that you are in.


You voted for the person who incited a crowd to go into the capitol and potentially take the lives of lawmakers. Took the lives of police officers. Took the lives of innocent lives who were there on the capitol that day. You voted on that side, and the people in Washington are continuing to vote on that side because why?

Because something is in it for them. Political expediency is in it for them. Money is in it for them. Power is in it for them. They're not on your side. Working-class black people and working-class white people in this country have more in common than working-class white people and Donald Trump, who is -- who professes to be a billionaire.

So actually, if working-class black people and working-class white people can get together, they would have more political power than the people who are using them in this whole process. That's the only part of it that's political.

But this is about America's original sin, and that is racism. And everybody's afraid to talk about it, afraid to really get down to the nitty-gritty, and framing it in the wrong possible way in this sort of superhero, you know, I forget what you called the movies that are out now, you know, the guy with the horns and all that. Look at this. In character form, this sort of Disneyesque form. That's not what this is.

This is about people who are dying and the country continuing to go down the wrong road and not facing its original sin. That's what this is. We had racist people who tried to take over the capitol. We have tens of thousands of members of the military who are now guarding the capitol of this country. Because of what? Because these people tried to take over the country. Because we told you about it. The news told you about it. The law enforcement --


CUOMO: You know who secretly agrees with you?

LEMON: Hang on one second. Law enforcement told you about it. Our security agencies told you about it. Christopher Wray told you about it. You and I had a conversation about it two years ago on this network when I talked about white right -- right-wing --

CUOMO: Extremism.

LEMON: -- extremism. No, and domestic terrorism. And we have to come to a realization that yes, white people in this country can be terrorists and they can be domestic terrorists. It's not just foreign people. We have to -- that is true facts from our government.

And stop tiptoeing -- look, I'm going to say it because I -- who -- if I don't say it who's going to say it? But everyone is afraid to talk -- everyone is, well, you know, there's -- well, there are white terrorists in this country, domestic terrorists. Stop whispering it. Say it. That's why -- that's why people were taken off guard by it. Because they didn't think it could happen because they don't take it seriously. Sorry, go on.

CUOMO: Well, I think that they were caught off guard.


CUOMO: That's an interesting question. We're going to have to see a little bit more before I jump on it too much.

LEMON: They were caught off guard because they didn't think that it could happened.

CUOMO: But here's what I know. They were not prepared for this the way they would have been if there was the same kind of chatter that ISIS was thinking of doing it. So, you know, and that's why we have to dig on that.

But I will say this. I think secretly you know who agrees with you? Every single Republican who ran their ass out of that room when they broke into the capitol.

LEMON: Yes. Well.

CUOMO: Because if they thought that they were just country-loving conservatives they wouldn't have run for their lives -- LEMON: Yes.

CUOMO: -- when they came in. You've got to go, D. Lemon. I love you.

LEMON (on camera): I know. I got to go. You've got some more hours. I don't. I have miles to go before I'm done and you have miles to go before you're asleep. See you. Thank you, brother. I'll see you soon.

So that's the truth, people, and nothing but the truth. So, we're at a really critical point in this country. And while we're here and we're at this very tenuous time, this very disturb -- everyone is off kilter, why don't we just get down to what things really are and stop trying to pretend that it's something else because it's easier for us to process it? We see what this is. You know what it is. So, let's get to the show.

This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon. Thank you so much for joining.

Donald Trump has more impeachments than terms in office. What a tremendous legacy. At this time one week from now Joe Biden will be president. Inaugurated in an America where all 50 states right now are under threat of armed insurrection. Insurrection incited by a disgraced president who has put us all in danger.

The only president impeached twice. And you know what? That is 50 percent of the presidential impeachments in all of U.S. history, so much winning, by a vote of 232 to 197, 10 Republicans voting with Democrats.


REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), UNITED STATES SPEAKER OF THE House: The ayes are 232. The nays are 197. The resolution is adopted without objection. The motion to reconsider is laid upon the table.



LEMON (on camera): The president releasing a video statement tonight. Because he can't tweet anymore after being banned by Twitter. A statement clearly intended to help him with Senate Republicans like Mitch McConnell, who is letting it be known that he is undecided now on convicting Trump.

The president taking no -- no responsibility for the riot he incited at the U.S. Capitol. Not admitting that the election was free and fair. Didn't do that. Not even mentioning that Joe Biden will be the president in seven days and going on to say this.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Mob violence goes against everything I believe in and everything our movement stands for.


LEMON (on camera): He needed to say that. Right? He needed to say that -- he needed to say that a week ago. When instead he said we love you. You're special. We'll all remember this day. That's why I said what I just said at the beginning of the show. That's what he said a week ago. Here's why he didn't and why it's impossible to believe him now.


TRUMP: Get him the hell out of here, will you, please?


TRUMP: Get him out of here. Throw him out.

If you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you? Seriously. OK?


Just knock the hell -- I promise you, I will pay for the legal fees. I promise. I promise.

I'd like to punch him in the face. I'll tell you. I love the old days. You know what they used to do to guys like that when they were in a place like this? They'd be carried out on a stretcher, folks.

When you guys put somebody in the car and you're protecting their head, you know, the way they put their hand over -- like don't hit their head and they've just killed somebody, don't hit their head? I said you can take the hand away. OK?

You also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group -- excuse me. Excuse me. I saw the same pictures as you did.

If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the second amendment people, maybe there is. I don't know.

We love you. You're very special.


LEMON (on camera): We love you. You're very special. A senior Trump adviser, a member of team Trump saying in the end it all came crashing down because he could never tell the truth. All because he couldn't accept that he lost.

But we did -- but we did see some people stand up for the truth today. Ten Republicans who voted with Democrats to impeach the president for inciting insurrection. Ten Republicans stood up to do the right thing. OK? There they are up on your screen. Right? Making this the most bipartisan impeachment ever. Another record for the books.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REP. JAIME HERRERA BEUTLER (R-WA): My vote to impeach our sitting

president is not a fear-based decision. I am not choosing a side. I'm choosing truth. It's the only way to defeat fear.

REP. DAN NEWHOUSE (R-WA): There is no excuse for President Trump's actions. The president took an oath to defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic. Last week there was a domestic threat at the door of the capitol and he did nothing to stop it. That is why with a heavy heart and clear resolve I will vote yes on these articles of impeachment.


LEMON (on camera): Congressman Meijer saying this tonight.


REP. PETER MEIJER (R-MI): This was a vote of conscience and this is where my conscience led me.


LEMON (on camera): A strategist to Congressman Rice saying, quote, "once you determine in your mind the president incited an insurrection, the political arguments don't matter."

But even after everything we saw last week, hundreds of rioters running rampant inside the capitol, attacking police, screaming threats against members of Congress, smashing and looting incited by the president, there were 197 Republicans who voted against impeachment. We saw an awful lot of cowardice and false equivalents on the House floor today.


REP. TOM MCCLINTOCK (R-CA): If we'd prosecuted BLM and antifa rioters across the country with the same determination these last six months, this incident may not have happened at all.


LEMON (on camera): Blaming the MAGA mob riot on Black Lives Matter. Next. We also heard the one, who had one of the most ridiculous examples about what aboutism I've heard in a long time.


REP. KEN BUCK (R-CO): And then the socialists in Hollywood joined their allies in Congress. Robert de Niro said that he wanted to punch the president in the face. Madonna thought about blowing up the White House.


[22:14:58] LEMON (on camera): Did I miss something? Is Robert de Niro president? Madonna maybe. Is Madonna president? Did I miss something? I don't know. Maybe in an alternative facts universe they are.

And we heard one Republican after another spouting empty rhetoric about unity. One week after Trump supporters ran wild on the House floor where the vote took place today, ran wild after the President of the United States incited them.

So, let's be very clear here. That mob was not interested in unity. That mob was not interested in conservative principles, unless conservative principle is inciting an insurrection and storming the capitol and leaving feces behind and urine. Unless that's what it is. OK, then maybe.

They attacked the seat of our government because the president lost and because he incited them to do it. Now, the fact is that Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy now admits the president bears responsibility, even though the president himself still hasn't admitted that, even after being impeached for it.


REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA), House MINORITY LEADER: The president bears responsibility for Wednesday's attack on Congress by mob rioters. He should have immediately denounced the mob when he saw what was unfolding.


LEMON (on camera): But then he launches into the old can't we all get along.


MCCARTHY: It does not matter if you are liberal, moderate or conservative. All of us must resist the temptation of further polarization. Instead we must unite once again as Americans. I understand for some this call for unity may ring hollow.


LEMON (on camera): Yes, it does ring hollow. Interesting now they're saying unity, unity, unity when they would not stop Trump from dividing for years. Now unity. Huh. It rings hollow. Especially coming from one of the Republicans who even after the riot, even after members of Congress and their families had to hide from the mob voted against certifying the election results. Unity.

Kevin McCarthy also signed on to the bogus Texas election lawsuit that was so meritless it was thrown out of the Supreme Court. And he said this just two days after the election, the election that Joe Biden won and Donald Trump lost.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MCCARTHY: President Trump won this election. So, everyone who's listening, do not be quiet. Do not -- do not be silent about this. We cannot allow this to happen before our very eyes.


LEMON (on camera): There's videotape, audiotape for everything. Or a tweet. And then there's a newly elected Congressman, Madison Cawthorn.


REP. MADISON CAWTHORN (R-NC): Today is a moment for members of Congress to put aside partisan politicking and place people over power. I urge my colleagues to vote against this divisive impeachment and realize that dividing America will not save this republic.


LEMON (on camera): That would have been great if they could have all gotten around in a room and said that very same thing to Donald Trump. But no. It wasn't politically expedient. Dividing America won't save the republic. What? He sure has changed his tune since last month when he advocated for what he called lightly threatening his colleagues. Right?

He didn't seem to have unity top of mind in his first tweet as an elected official tweeting, cry more, lib. Unity. I guess the tweet wasn't enough for him because he put it on a shirt. For sale. On his web site. It is still there. I didn't see any unity shirts. Wonder why. Hypocrisy.

One hundred ninety-seven Republicans voted against impeachment, even after everything we have seen over the past week, yet here we are with a president who has been impeached twice. Remember when the president's number one son Don Jr. tweeted this? Dear Clintons, you know what's deplorable? Being impeached. That did not age well. Remember when the president said this?


TRUMP: I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose any voters. OK?


LEMON (on camera): Looks like as far as the vast majority of GOP is concerned, this president can incite a riot that leaves five people dead, risks the life of his own vice president, and get away with it.


And that is why today is important. The legacy. The place in history. The only president to be impeached twice. The only president in the modern era to lose the popular vote twice. The only president to incite a rebellion against the United States. So much winning. Republicans, are you proud of yourself?

Congratulations. So, what's next? Donald Trump's Senate trial won't begin until he's out of office. But the Senate vote to convict him.


REP. CEDRIC RICHMOND (D-LA): Stand up, man up, woman up, and defend this Constitution from all enemies foreign and domestic including Donald J. Trump.



LEMON (on camera): What happened today in this country making history. The House impeaching President Trump for the second time, inciting the deadly insurrection last week at the capitol.


I want to bring in CNN's Political Director, Mr. David Chalian and White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins. Hello. Good to see you. Kaitlan, as usual. David, wow, to what do we owe this honor?

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: I'm so happy to be here with you, Don. It's a big day in American history.

LEMON: It is. I'm so glad to have both of you. I want to get your perspective. David, since I don't see you very often, I know that you're very busy considering, you know, what's going on in Washington. In politics and history, it doesn't get bigger than today. So, he's impeached. What happens next, David?

CHALIAN: Yes, it's a good question. You're right. We should note it doesn't get much bigger. I mean, the moment of history that we're in, it's hard to see how he doesn't go down in the history books as the worst president in American history. He'll have this blemish that no other president has of being twice impeached.

But you note, Don, what does this mean next? Mitch McConnell has indicated at least an openness to perhaps deciding to convict in a Senate trial. So that is a bit of an earthquake, much like Liz Cheney's statement was in the House, that we are in a different time right now in how some of the Republican elected officials, and I say some because it really was a handful, are assessing a future in a post-Trump world.

And Mitch McConnell is giving a big signal by just saying he's open. But at the same time, he throws that hot potato of the Senate trial into Chuck Schumer's lap. He's going to make sure that it is by not starting it right away it's going to dominate the beginning days of the Biden presidency.

And if you're starting to read the statements from a lot of Republican senators, some of whom would be on the watch list of like the potential 17 to come on over, it doesn't seem like there's a groundswell right now among Republicans in the Senate to go ahead and convict the president.

LEMON: Kaitlan, instead of offering any remorse for inciting a deadly insurrection, a White House adviser says that the president is in self-pity mode. And you're learning tonight that President Trump has told staff not to pay Rudy Giuliani's legal fees. Really?

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE House CORRESPONDENT: Yes. They're not sure if the president is serious about these instructions or even really clear on how much money Rudy Giuliani is making from the president. But he has told people not to pay Rudy Giuliani's legal fees right now.

And this is a smaller part of a bigger picture, which is that, you're right. The president isn't taking any responsibility for the situation that he has landed himself in with the words that he used and the lies that he spread about the election and so he is basically lashing out at everyone around him.

And Rudy Giuliani, his long-time attorney, is one of those people. He has told people to stop paying his legal fees. They're not really clear what that's going to look like. People thought Rudy Giuliani was going to be involved in that Senate impeachment trial but Rudy Giuliani's has been asking people, you know, what the plans are even though there is no comprehensive legal strategy.

And one other person we should note that the president has been lashing out at in addition to Mitch McConnell he's been fuming over is Kevin McCarthy. You know, a typical Republican ally of the president who is very close to him, knows his favorite candy, that kind of relationship. He said today that Trump does bear responsibility.

And I'm told that the president is furious about that and that Kevin McCarthy floated this idea of potentially censuring the president.

LEMON: So, David, some Republicans, maybe they would have voted for impeachment but were scared of Trump or some sort of retribution or fearful for their lives from the insurrectionists. What do you think of the argument that if they can't do their duty they should resign?

CHALIAN: Well, they did what they saw as their duty today, which was to try and do anything to maintain their power. That's why they voted against impeachment. Because as you said, I think the biggest fear for a lot of them is the political fear.

And Don, this is the moment we're in in this definitional battle of the future of the Republican Party right now. Clearly, if you look at all the public polling out there, if you look at the majority of Republicans and how they voted today, if you look at the fact that the majority of Republicans still voted to contest a totally legitimate and fair election as if it wasn't after the capitol was attacked by a riotous insurrection.

I mean, the fact is Republican voters are still overwhelmingly in favor of Donald Trump not leaving office early, Donald Trump not being responsible for the attack on the capitol in any way whatsoever, and still a lot of support for him and his members follow. But here's the difference. When you saw the 10 Republicans come over

and vote for impeachment, when you hear the signals McConnell or Toomey, Murkowski, Romney, others are sending in the Senate, you do see there's a potential that some Republicans actually don't want to follow where the majority of the party is right now, they want to lead it to a new place. And that battle of leadership versus following is how we're going to see the Republican Party sort itself out in the months ahead.


LEMON: It's going to be interesting to watch, David, and you and Kaitlan will be at the very front of the line watching it for us at the forefront. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.


LEMON: Next, a congresswoman who voted yes to impeach today. A congresswoman who was there when Trump supporters stormed the capitol and whose family is now facing consequences because of it. Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, next.


LEMON (on camera): So tonight, President Trump stands impeached by the House of Representatives for inciting last week's deadly insurrection on Capitol Hill. And there are grave questions still tonight about the extent of the plot and who may have been involved.

Let's discuss now. Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley is here, a Massachusetts Democrat. Congresswoman, thank you so much. I'm glad that you're safe. We're going to talk about all of it. OK?

So, let's get to where we are right now because we -- there are 10 Republicans who joined Democrats to impeach. Most didn't. And now they want unity despite voting to overturn the election even after the deadly attack on the capitol? What's your response to that?

REP. AYANNA PRESSLEY (D-MA): Well, first, this -- this House met the moment for these crimes in the wake of a coordinated violent attack by white supremacists on our nation's capitol. Donald Trump had to be impeached and removed. This is someone who's already been banned from Twitter but still has access to the nuclear codes.


So, the first step is impeach and remove, which is also about ensuring that he cannot -- so that he is barred from running for public office again. The second is to expel, to expel those members who have aided and abetted and been complicit in the cruelty, the corruption, and the criminality of this administration, who perpetuated the big lie, who enflamed and emboldened white supremacy and this attack. And they must be taken to account.

And then the third step and one that I was the first to call for, within hours of being attacked by this violent mob, is investigations. So, impeach, remove, expel those members, and then we need to do an investigation to better understand the individuals and the agencies that enabled this violent attack.

LEMON: Yes. I want to -- can we talk a little bit more about that? Because your office put out a statement that there's now an investigation after your chief of staff discovered during the attack that panic buttons in your office were missing. What else would you like to see investigated, Congresswoman?

PRESSLEY: Well, learning that those panic alarms, those panic buttons had been removed from my office was certainly unnerving. There is an investigation underway. And so, I can't say much more about that.

But again, in my role on the House oversight committee I called within hours for the oversight committee to initiate a thorough investigation to understand those individuals and agencies that might have enabled this violent attack.

LEMON: I have to ask you, and sorry about this, not asking you but sorry that your husband Conan has tested positive for COVID-19 following the capitol attack. Your Republican colleagues refused to wear their masks in lockdown. You so far have tested negative. How is he and how are you doing?

PRESSLEY: Well, you know, my husband is strong and protective and he was there during the attacks. Because he is protective. And it is infuriating to think that because of the callous disregard for human life exhibited by those anti-maskers that my husband has now contracted the coronavirus.

So, you know, I know that he will make a full recovery. Our family is like millions of American families where you are care-taking and care- giving for a loved one who has contracted the virus and doing everything possible to keep everyone else in your family healthy and safe.

LEMON: What do you think should happen to them?

PRESSLEY: Again, these folks, I mean, they're just -- it's criminal behavior, Don. I don't know what else to call it. They have been complicit from the very beginning in their willful criminality to carry the water for Donald Trump and these science denials which allowed this pandemic to rage out of control.

And then by refusing to wear the masks that's criminal behavior. That's chemical warfare so far as I'm concerned. And again, this is exactly why we should have moving and I was very proud to be an original co-sponsor of Representative Bush's resolution calling for the expulsion of these members. They are unfit to serve.

You know, Don, when they took us to the quote, unquote, "safe room" and I walked in and saw that there was this contingent of anti-maskers in the room gathered, I immediately exited. So, imagine in that moment the choice that I was making. And we were told as we left that space, you'll be on your own in an evacuation. And I said I'll take my chances. So in the midst of this terrorizing event which inflicted great

trauma, injury, and loss of life where you would think even in that moment that they would attempt to extend some grace, some collegiality, or just to be decent human beings, they chose to recklessly endanger the members in that room, my spouse, my staff, and that of everyone else who was in proximity to them.


LEMON: Yes. And now they want unity. Congresswoman --

PRESSLEY: Yes. I mean, I don't want that kind of unity, Don.

LEMON: yes.

PRESSLEY: Unity at the expense of my very existence?



LEMON: Congresswoman, I hope that you continue to test negative, and I hope that your husband -- we're sending him best wishes. OK? And prayers. Thank you so much. And we're glad that you're safe.

PRESSLEY: Thank you, Don.

LEMON: Thank you. Twenty thousand National Guard troops descending on Washington, D.C. ahead of the inauguration. As investigators tell CNN there are signs the riot was planned. Not just something that got out of hand. And we've got new video that could be a clue. I'm going to play it, and we're going to take it -- we're going to talk to a top senator about it. That's next.



LEMON (on camera): So, you need to pay attention to this one. Seriously. Gather around. The shocking new video that's surfacing now shows just how determined some of the rioters were to penetrate the capitol. It shows insurrectionists communicating with one another near the tail end of the attack.


UNKNOWN: I've been in the other room, listen to me. In the other room on the other side of this door, right here where these feet are standing. There is a glass that if somebody, and if it's broken, you can drop down into a room underneath it. There's also two doors --

UNKNOWN: Open this, like this.

UNKNOWN: -- in the other room, one in the rear, and one to the right when you go in. So, people should probably coordinate together if we're going to take

this building.

We got another window to break to make in and out easy. And the window here (Inaudible) into the whole room needs to be broken.


LEMON (on camera): Can you believe that? That video emerging as we learn that federal investigators are pursuing signs that the capitol riot was planned. Let -- excuse me.

Let's discuss now. Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal is here. Senator, that is -- good evening. That's very disturbing. This new video on top of investigators uncovering new evidence and information about what was happening inside the capitol. We are learning about a lot of tactical gear, weaponry, and planning. How deep are these investigations going to go?

SEN. RICHARD BLUMENTHAL (D-CT): These investigations ought to go a lot deeper, Don. And what we're seeing is evidence of planned, organized domestic terrorism that goes way beyond this particular attack and mob assault that was incited and instigated by the President of the United States but involves domestic terrorism that's prevalent throughout the country.

And I proposed a 9/11-type commission that ought to look into infiltration by those domestic terrorists into some of our law enforcement agencies, as well as probably the military, but most certainly a manhunt and a concentrated law enforcement effort to track down, apprehend, crack down on domestic terrorism in this country, which by the way the FBI has called the most important domestic threat.

LEMON: I mentioned that at the top of the show, and I'm glad you said it and you're confirming. That is the most -- right? That is the number one, the biggest one.

So, listen, Senator, some tips the FBI has received appear to be -- appear to show members of Congress with people who later showed up at the riot. And one congresswoman claims that she saw members giving reconnaissance tours the day before the attack. Are you worried about complicity from inside the government?

BLUMENTHAL: I'm worried about complicity among members of Congress. They should be held accountable certainly. And consideration ought to be given to expulsion, censure, other disciplinary or punitive steps to send a message and provide deterrence.

But my focus right now is on convicting the President of the United States. I strongly advocated impeachment. Now I believe he ought to be brought to trial as quickly, surely, swiftly and fairly as possible, which can be done right after the inaugural.

The evidence is simple and straightforward. His own words including afterward when he had no remorse or regret, no contrition, and the guilty intent and his actions can be presented very quickly to the United States Senate. I hope Republicans will join in convicting him. LEMON: OK, so let's continue on talking about impeachment since you

brought it up, right? Leader McConnell won't bring back the Senate, won't bring the Senate back early for a trial. But he hasn't decided whether he will vote to convict. Do you think 17 Senate Republicans will break ranks, break with Trump?

BLUMENTHAL: You know, they're saying they want to unify the country. One way to unify the country is a bipartisan vote for conviction. A number of them said last time when all of us as Democrats voted for conviction that they thought the president had learned a lesson. Plainly he didn't. If anything, it emboldened him.

I hope now they will see their responsibility to themselves, their constituents, and to history. And the core principle here is one of accountability. Even though he may be out of office, there still have to be consequences for his blatant criminality that killed five people or directly or indirectly resulted in those deaths, as well as injuries. And an attempt to overthrow a lawful election, stop the counting of those electoral votes. There have to be consequences.


LEMON: This is, I mean, shocking, this next question. I can't believe that the doubling, tripling, quadrupling down, Senator Josh Hawley trying to defend his challenge to the Electoral College votes writing this in an op-ed.

He says, much of the media and many members of the Washington establishment want to deceive Americans into thinking those who raise concerns incited violence, simply voicing the concern. That's false. And the allegation itself is corrosive and dangerous.

What world is he living in? Does he not at the capitol on Wednesday? I mean, does that argument make any sense to you?

BLUMENTHAL: It makes no sense, especially for someone like myself who lived through the horror of that day, the rushed panic from the Senate chamber down the hall. Seeing outside the mob carrying Trump and confederate flags and pipes and bats that were used to break the windows.

Hearing the mob through the doors of the chamber and then rush down the tunnel. He knows better than to think that it was simply free expression or a protest. It was a mob riot. And his objections. And he knew better about the merits because he knows there was no fraud in the election. It was simply a political stunt. And he knows that as well.

LEMON: Senator, we -- we're not only glad you are here, but we are glad that you're safe and around for a long time to come. Thank you so much. I appreciate you joining.

BLUMENTHAL: Thank you very much.

LEMON: Thank you. The lawmakers still standing by Trump want you to think this isn't what it is. They want you to think it's cancel culture. But take this, it is about accountability. More, next.



LEMON (on camera): Take this. As President Trump whines about being booted off of social media, other Republicans are crying cancel culture as a defense for the now twice impeached president.

Congressman Jim Jordan from a lectern on the House floor at the U.S. Capitol live on TV earlier today falsely suggested that only one side is allowed to talk.


REP. JIM JORDAN (R-OH): Do you have a functioning first amendment when the cancel culture only allows one side to talk? When you can't even have a debate in this country, this great country, the greatest country ever? It needs to stop because if it continues, if it continues it won't just be Republicans who get cancelled. It won't just be the President of the United States. The cancel culture will come for us all.


LEMON (on camera): So, he is saying that about a debate where he is actually being allowed to talk live on every network. After being allowed to talk the congressman tweeted and retweeted moments from his speech for all to see and hear. There it is. Stop. Cancel.

Also speaking on the House floor today and broadcast all over the world right. QAnon Congressman Marjorie Taylor Greene wearing a mask that says censored. Seriously? Well, at least she is following COVID precautions. Senator Lindsey Graham digging to new depths of cancel culture what aboutism tonight as he gripes over Trump's second impeachment.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): If you can impeach a president after they're out of office, why don't we impeach George Washington. He owned slaves. Where does this stop?


LEMON (on camera): Lindsey, Lindsey, Lindsey. So Lindsey, listen, George Washington did not incite a deadly insurrection at the capitol of his own country, this country. Getting called out for lying about the results of an election is not cancel culture. Being kicked off social media for fomenting violence, also not cancel culture.

Impeached for inciting an insurrection. Also not cancel culture. What it is, is the culture of consequences. Consequences for inciting a deadly riot.

And we have new reporting on law enforcement officers from various parts of the country who were there, and they are facing charges.