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Don Lemon Tonight
House Committee Subpoenaed Pat Cipollone; Pat Cipollone Agreed To A Transcribed Interview; Democrats To Ensure Republicans Don't Win In November; Texas Reports Deadliest Human Trafficking; Land Ownership Returned To A Black Family. Aired 10-11p ET
Aired June 29, 2022 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Thank you for hanging out with me. I will be back tomorrow night. DON LEMON TONIGHT starts right now. Hi, Don.
DON LEMON, CNN HOST: Who wouldn't want to hang out with Sara Sidner?
SIDNER: I mean, I'll try.
LEMON: I know. I got to get to work rather than hang out with you.
SIDNER: All right.
LEMON: Thanks, Sara. I'll see you tomorrow night. Have a good night.
This is DON LEMON TONIGHT.
And this is big. This is big.
The January 6th committee subpoenas Pat Cipollone. We have been talking about Pat Cipollone and the witness yesterday talked about Pat Cipollone. Everyone has been talking about. That Pat Cipollone is the former president's White House counsel, a key witness to what was going on inside the White House the days before, the days during, the time during, and after the attack on the United States Capitol.
We have been trying to get him to answer -- they have been trying, I should say, to get an answer -- more questions, after previously sitting for an interview behind closed doors that was in April. The committee is saying it has continued to obtain evidence that Cipollone is, quote, "uniquely positioned to testify," but he has declined to cooperate, further leaving the panel with no choice but to issue the subpoena.
And we have heard some of what the evidence was for ourselves. Pat Cipollone's name coming up again and again as I said in testimony before the committee. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CASSIDY HUTCHINSON, FORMER AIDE TO WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF MARK
MEADOWS: Mr. Cipollone said something to the effect of, please make sure we don't go up to the capitol, Cassidy. Keep in touch with me. We're going to get charged with every crime imaginable if we make that movement happen.
He was on his phone, and I remember pat saying to him something to the effect of, the rioters have gotten to the capitol, Mark. We have to go down and see the president now. And Mark looked up and said, he doesn't want to do anything, Pat.
And pat said something to the effect of, and very clearly, had said this to Mark. Something to the effect of, Mark, something needs to be done, or people are going to die and the blood is going to be on your effing hands. This is getting out of control. I'm going down there.
RICHARD DONOGHUE, FORMER ACTING DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL: Pat Cipollone weighed in at one point. I remember him saying, you know, that letter that this guy wants to send, that letter is a murder suicide pact. It's going to damage everyone who touches it. And we should have nothing to do with that letter.
REP. ADAM KINZINGER (R-IL): Pat Cipollone told the select committee that he intervened when you heard Mr. Clark was meeting with the president about legal matters without his knowledge, which was strictly against White House policy. Mr. Cipollone and Mr. Philbin, like Mr. Rosen, told Mr. Clark to stand down, and he didn't.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: So, a lawyer familiar with Cipollone's thinking telling CNN that he'll probably agree to a transcribed interview but limited to specific topics to avoid privileged issues. OK. What does that exactly mean? We're going to answer that, because I'm not sure what that means. I'm not sure Elie Honig, who I have here in a minute knows exactly what that means, but we are going to ask him.
The question of whether his testimony would be taped or live is another issue to be worked at, but I want you to listen to this. This is just moments ago. This is Liz Cheney. She's speaking at the Reagan Library. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): We have to choose because Republicans cannot both be loyal to Donald Trump and loyal to the Constitution.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: OK, so she said it out loud. And now, a Republican Party that's knuckled under to the former president over and over even nearly 18 months after he left Washington in disgrace, is quietly, privately acknowledging what we have all seen and heard for ourselves. What we heard yesterday from Cassidy Hutchinson; her bombshell testimony is damning. Our senior House Republican, one senior House Republican, I should
say, who didn't back impeachment, telling CNN, quote, "this testimony will lead to an indictment," pointing to Mark Meadows and maybe even Trump himself.
So, let's get straight now to Denver Riggleman. He is a former adviser to the January 6th committee, and a former U.S. Congressman, also CNN senior legal analyst Elie Honig. Thank you both.
I should probably put on my glasses so I can read this evening. So, thank you very much, everyone for joining.
So, Elie, a source is telling CNN's Dana Bash -- I want you to explain this to me exactly what I see here that he might agree to a limited, transcribed interview. Explain how that could go, and how would -- how would -- that would -- something about discussing direct conversation with the president, and that it would avoid specific topics of privileged issues?
ELIE HONIG, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Yes.
LEMON: When I was saying that you were like, what does that mean?
HONIG: You can read my body language there.
HONIG: Let me try to translate this.
HONIG: They're trying to reach a negotiated resolution where they ask Pat Cipollone some questions but not others. But if they are going to say, you don't have to answer anything that might involve an executive privilege, that means they're not going to ask him about what conversations did you, Pat Cipollone, have with Donald Trump?
And to me, that's the whole ball of whacks. If you are giving that away, you dancing around the most important question of all. And by the way, let's remember yesterday, Cassidy Hutchinson said Pat Cipollone said to me, were committing every crime in the book here. Fraud, obstruction.
The biggest single question is, did you, Pat Cipollone, say that same thing to Donald Trump? Because if he did, that's a big deal. But if they're going to let him avoid that, it sort of defeats the whole purpose.
LEMON: So, the conversations he had, you know, with Cipollone and others, --
LEMON: -- is even Cassidy Hutchinson or Mark Meadows, is that, are they privileged as well?
HONIG: No. They're not going to privilege. They're not going to be subject for such privilege.
LEMON: So why are his privileged?
HONIG: Because it involves the president, right? And so, if you have White House counsel, Pat Cipollone talking with other White House staffers, that's probably not going to be privileged, that still important to get.
LEMON: Yes. Because I'm sure they want to ask him about the conversations that he may have had with Hutchinson, right?
LEMON: To corroborate what she said against what he said.
HONIG: Exactly. And the thinking maybe, let's get something, it's better than nothing. It's still important for us to hear about Cipollone's conversations with Mark Meadows, with Cassidy Hutchinson, and with others. But again, the cost for them doing that maybe them giving up his conversations with Trump.
LEMON: All right, Denver Riggleman, I haven't forgotten about you. But let me just ask you, what is the difference? What is that, he has agreed to a transcribed interview, and I'm talking to Elie now, a transcribed interview limited -- what does that mean?
HONIG: That means he's not going to testify in public like we saw yesterday.
HONIG: With Cassidy Hutchinson that means he's going to go behind closed doors. We may see a transcript.
LEMON: OK, got it. OK. So Denver, you served on the January 6th committee until recently, and your team help to sift through all of the data and the communications coming in into this committee. Cipollone was involved in so many conversations with top White House aides and the president. How important could this testimony be?
DENVER RIGGLEMAN, FORMER SENIOR TECHNICAL ADVISER TO JANUARY 6TH COMMITTEE: I think it will be very, very important. And I do have the brilliant legal mind of Elie Honig or the expertise, right, but here's what I want to know. Is the couch privileged information, right? Meadows sitting on the couch texting, is that privilege? If the couch isn't privileged, and Meadows isn't privileged with this, that's what I want to know.
Looking at the data that I've looked at, I'm very interested to see what Cipollone has to say about the communications that were going on with Meadows. And the fact is, Cassidy's testimony was so strong, I want to see what Cipollone has to say about it. And you know, I said this earlier, Don, you know, she really was the
adult in the room. And the thing that she was saying, I think, really struck a chord with the American people. I would say out of all the hearings, I think this is the most effective, because it showed behind the scenes, but it also showed the mindset of Donald Trump. And I think a lot of us have known this for a while, but finally seeing that in the hearing was very important to me personally.
LEMON: Denver, during Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony, she was asked what Mark Meadows was doing, starting around 2 p.m. hour on January 6th. And Hutchinson described Mark Meadows as not really caring about what was going on, scrolling on his phone.
CNN has some of the text he was getting at the time from Marjorie Taylor Greene, from Laura Ingraham, from Donald Trump jr., a whole cast of characters right there, urging him to do something. The committee has gathered all of this information. How does it all fit together?
RIGGLEMAN: My goodness. You know, I'm only going to talk about the publicly released texts, but I think there's over 50 between 2 and 4.30. So, 2 p.m. and 4.30 p.m. on January 6th. Just publicly released, that's all I'll talk about, Don.
But when you look at what's on that phone, you have the beginnings of the Antifa false flag theory that was on there, right? Starting with Jason Miller, you know, going through individuals like Louie Gohmert, Marjorie Taylor Greene. You have the individuals like Laura Ingraham and people of that nature, you know, from Fox News or from other organizations begging him to stop the violence. That's a very important time.
So, as he is scrolling on that couch, you know, what is this, couch gate? You know, if he is scrolling on the couch, I want to know what's going on there, because I've seen a lot of communications. And just looking at it publicly, what CNN has, it's pretty damning. I think again, that's why it's so important to know the state of mind of those individuals.
Because if they didn't care, if they're just sort of they're relaxing in their ivory tower while people are getting hurt and killed and beat on the ground, I think that goes to a dereliction of duty at the minimum. Right?
If I'm looking at this, people like Elie, you know, talking about criminal charges or talking about the actual legal side of this, just the judgment and the complete dereliction of your oath, I think, is what was so compelling about Cassidy's testimony.
But again, there's over 50 texts between that time, I guess in the time that he could have been sitting on the couch. You have some incredible conspiracy theories in there. You have a look at the madness. I think that's what the American people need to look at. And you, go take a look at this.
LEMON: Well, listen, the most, I think, intriguing part, right, was the histrionics of the ketchup and the grabbing of the wheel, allegedly. All of those things, and people are focusing on that. But really, the most important part was, he seemed to be OK with the violence. He seemed to be OK with people who were, you know, maybe had weapons coming into the capitol, coming into the area.
That is the really important part. The rest is just, you know, my gosh, I can't believe this. Some of what we, I'm sure, some of it is true, about the, you know, the ketchup and whatever, but the other things we don't know. But still, those are the important parts here.
RIGGLEMAN: No. I mean to those, I mean, that's interesting color, but I'm not going to say this in a bad way. I just don't care about that as a data guy. You what I want to look like is I want to look at the timeline when President Trump when he talked about the mags, disabling the mags or removing the mags.
I want to talk about a person who said, hey, you know, who had somebody brief him that there's weapons in the crowd and didn't care. And said those are my people they're not going to hurt me anyway. I want to know those timelines.
Now, we have -- we have a lot of data, but again, Pat Cipollone could shed light on those timelines for the things that he said. Those are the things that are very important to me. The other stuff is color, it talks to his mindset, great, but for me, I want to know the timeline of when he was actually talking about those types of things when it comes to the crowd, him being protected, getting rid of the mags, and then understanding that people were actually armed. Those are the things that really, that I'm really interested in.
LEMON: I got a question for you, Elie, unless you want to weigh in on this first about.
HONIG: I agree. I think the most important things are the facts.
LEMON: The committee tease that they have evidence of witness tampering. Liz Cheney says that they were "taking it seriously and will consider next steps." Again, that's a quote. Is she hinting at a criminal referral here?
HONIG: Well, the next step should be to take that evidence, put it in an envelope and send it with a courier right up to the U.S. Justice Department. That's not even a close call. Those snippets that Liz Cheney showed us yesterday? That is straight-up witness tampering.
That is obstruction of justice. That's not even close to the line. That's not a question of, well, it depends what was meant. That is how they teach it in law school. And if they can figure out who made those threats to the witnesses, that person or those people need to be charged immediately. This gets to the integrity of not just the entire committee investigation, but also any potential criminal investigations.
LEMON: What about Denver and I were just talking about now? The firsthand account from Trump -- about Trump knowing his supporters were armed, and he sent them to the capitol? Is Merrick Garland listening to that, do you think he'll act?
HONIG: He better be. I mean, I think that was the single most important thing to come out of yesterday.
LEMON: That's what I thought, right.
HONIG: It's the closest link, the first direct link we've had from Donald Trump to knowledge that that crowd was armed and dangerous before he sent them down to the capitol.
LEMON: We know the committee is still getting additional evidence. They're getting calls on their tip line, Elie. Do you think that we'll -- we're going to hear more from people inside the West Wing who also saw what was going on?
HONIG: I hope. So, I hope that people saw the example Cassidy Hutchinson set yesterday, and want to be more like her than like the many cowards who are hiding the truth and refusing to cooperate and defying subpoenas.
And as one small example of the way investigations can naturally evolve, Cassidy Hutchinson testifies yesterday, the subpoena from Pat Cipollone comes today. One thing leads to another. So, I hope that there are other, particularly those mid-level, maybe junior level staffers who look at Cassidy Hutchinson and say I want to go down in history like.
LEMON: Denver, the final two hearings are meant to focus on Trump summoning the mob and legally directing them to the capitol, and Trump failing to take immediate action to stop the violence. I mean, one question that's still out there, a direct line between the Oath Keepers and the Proud Boys at the White House, what are your thoughts on that?
RIGGLEMAN: I think that's what's going to be interesting about those hearings, you know, Don, I had this discussion. I'm not going to talk about that too much, but I will tell you that the committee has a tremendous amount of data and information about those right-wing extremist groups. And the teams, the investigative teams they are incredibly good.
I mean, it's going to be a red team day about the makeup of the teams. The red team is going to be leading a lot of that. And those guys are absolutely professional, incredibly thorough. And that's the fear, I think, that people in Trump world are going to have, when that comes out, and you start talking about the right-wing extremist groups, they talk about happened that day, we haven't even got into the organization and operational issues of what happened on January 6. That is still coming.
And so, Don, it's a great question, I can't answer that, but I think the committee needs to present the evidence, they need to let the American people take a look at that. LEMON: You said to an earlier question that you'll only going to
focus on what was public in those text messages, so, there is more where there came from?
RIGGLEMAN: You know, you never know. You never know.
LEMON: So, you can't talk about it, is that where you are telling me?
RIGGLEMAN: Listen, I, my goodness, if I could run around America with those things showing them off, I would, but I can't. You know, it's the committees, it's not mine. I think it's public data. I know they are going to release it at some point and they said they might. But again, let's let them do their investigation, Don, and I'm here to support them any way I can.
LEMON: Thank you, Denver. Thank you, Elie. I appreciate it.
Next, the man who was at the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue on January 6th when the violence was underway. What Congressman Jason Crow thinks is important about testimony for Pat Cipollone. There he is. We'll talk to him after the break.
LEMON: You know, it is still shocking to think about that then President Trump knew there were people in the crowd on January 6th who were armed. He knew violence could come to the capitol. Knew and did nothing to stop it.
I want to bring in now Democratic Congressman Jason Crow, who was there that day as the capitol was overrun by rioters. Congressman, I appreciate you joining. Thank you so much.
So, Hutchinson made it very clear that Trump knew rioters had weapons like AR-15s in that crowd, and that he didn't care. I just want to play some of that, and then we'll discuss. Here it is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHENEY: Was he told in that conversation that people could come to the mags because they had weapons?
CHENEY: And that people -- his response was to say that they can march to the capitol from -- from the ellipse?
HUTCHINSON: Something to the effect of, take the effing mags away, they are not there to hurt me. Let them in. Let my people in. They can march to the capitol after the rally is over. They can much from the -- they can march from the ellipse, take the effing mags away, then they can march to the capitol.
(END VIDEO CLIP) LEMON: And CNN counted that as part of 15 total warnings of violence that were cited in the hearing. What was your reaction to hearing that after the danger it put you and your colleagues in, sir?
REP. JASON CROW (D-CO): Well, Don, like so much of the other evidence that has come out over the course of this select committee's process, what has become more and more clear is that this wasn't an accident. We didn't stumble into the insurrection.
This wasn't something that just happened on its own. This was deliberate, it was intentional. They knew about it, the president knew about it, his closest advisers knew about it. They knew that there are armed and dangerous people that were intending to go and do violence and to prevent the American people's vote from being certified in the capitol and conduct an insurrection.
This was an intentional. They knew what was going to happen. There are police officers who are dead now today. There are dozens of police officers who have been wounded for life. There are people that have been traumatized, and they knew about it. They knew what was going to happen.
LEMON: Congressman, the committee has now subpoenaed former White House counsel Pat Cipollone, how important is that testimony after what we learned on Tuesday?
CROW: Well, it's really important. I mean, you think about the testimony of Ms. Hutchinson who was in many other rooms where these conversations were happening. But in Pat Cipollone you have one of the president's trusted advisers, one of his most trusted advisers, so much so that the president trusted Pat Cipollone the defense of his first impeachment trial.
And I know that because I actually debated and went head-to-head with Pat Cipollone in the first impeachment trial when I prosecuting that case. This is somebody who has had a very, very deep conversation with the president that was in that inner circle. And if people know what was going on, and if anyone knows what was going on, it would be Pat Cipollone.
LEMON: Hutchinson also described scenes of the then chief of staff Mark Meadows scrolling on his phone as Congress was being overrun, do you think that was a dereliction of his duty?
CROW: Yes, absolutely. I mean, I don't know how else you would describe it. Just the nonchalant, the lack of care, the lack of disregard, it just shows, frankly, the level of depravity for some of these folks in the White House. They didn't care about the vote. They didn't care about the damage to our democracy. They didn't care about the health and well-being of those police officers who are dead and wounded now. They didn't care about any of it. Just their own power.
And that's really what this is about. Right? This is about making sure that we restore that and we make that wrong right. And that's why this process is so important. That's why we have to see it through to its conclusion, and why they are going to have to package those findings up at the end and deliver them to the Department of Justice so that people are held accountable.
LEMON: I'm wondering what, you know, everyone was thinking who was part of this insurrection, meaning who were threatened by insurrectionists on the outside, right, our lawmakers and the staff and support group and police officers. When you heard Trump wanting desperately to go to the capitol with the crowd, what do you think he would have done when he got there?
CROW: I don't know. I've never -- I've never pretended to get into the side -- the mind of Donald Trump, in fact, I don't want to go there. I don't want to try to go into the mind of Donald Trump. What I think is it probably wouldn't be positive, it wouldn't be good, because it's not a healthy and good place to be.
But I think we have to, you know, broaden out here and look at the larger story of this committee process. One of the things that's really shocking to me is the number of people that have really important information that's important to our country, to our democracy and to our national security, to our public safety, who have withheld or sat on that information until they've been compelled to testify and provide it.
How many more people are there, dozens, hundreds? That have important information. My message to them tonight is your country needs you to come forward. We need to hear about this, the American people need to hear the information you have, about the level of disregard and the criminal conduct within this administration, because we need to make it right. There is no way that we can fix this until we know what happened.
LEMON: Congressman, after the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade this week, many Americans are looking to Democrats to do something to safeguard reproductive rights. I mean, people are not satisfied just being told to vote this fall when Democrats currently hold the power. I should -- it was last week actually, I should have said. So, what are Democrats going to do?
CROW: Well, we have to make sure that we are protecting women's data. Right now, there is a lot of information that's in the commercial space and the public domain for women that are in very dangerous states and places right now. So, we're looking at how we protect that data.
As a member of the armed services committee, I'm looking to how we protect our female service members who have been assigned to post in states where they are not treated as equal citizens, where they don't have equal access to health care. That's not OK. So how can we protect those female servicemen and women?
But we do need to win at the ballot box. I will push back on the notion that, you know, don't say that this is not a political problem. This is a political problem. We have to win seats. We have to maintain majorities, and that matters. [22:25:05]
Because if we lose, and if people elect Republicans into those seats, guess what? They're going to go for a federal abortion ban. And that's going to harm millions of women. So, yes, the ballot box and what's going to happen between now and November does matter.
LEMON: Do you think your party was slow to act? I mean, 50 years to codify Roe, and it never happened.
CROW: Yes, it never happened. And we've passed the Women's Health Protection Acts several times through the House, where it goes to dais in the Senate. That's why I'm a firm believer in removing the filibuster because right now the filibuster is way outlived any purpose that it may have served at one point. You know, I think it has a very fraught history. But the bottom line is we need to eliminate it --
LEMON: But Congressman, those are all things you are saying --
CROW: -- and actually do the will of the American people.
LEMON: Those are all things that you are saying that you are going to do, but what about over the last 50 years? Because even -- there are even Democrats now and supporters of abortion rights who are saying Democrats have done nothing, what did they do? Part of the blame, they are part of the blame for allowing this to happen, Democrats are.
CROW: Yes, should Roe have been codified in the past, absolutely. Should we have done more to prevent what's happening, yes, I don't know how you can say we shouldn't have. But where we are -- we are in the position we are in now. We have to win elections. We got to maintain a majority. We had to expand a majority in Senate, and we have to save millions of people. That's what's at stake between now and November. We have to focus on what we need to do to protect these folks.
LEMON: Do you think this is going to encourage Democrats -- or I should say, people who support abortion, you think that's going to encourage them to go to the polls by November? I mean, perhaps, they may have forgotten about it, I don't know. I mean, we have short memories here in this time.
Do you think it's going to encourage people, or do you think it's going to discourage people who are going to say, you know, Democrats didn't protect our rights, why should we trust them to do it now?
CROW: Well, I will put it this way, there are a lot of things on the ballot this November. The future of our democracy, rule of law, the climate crisis, gun violence prevention, abortion rights and the equality of women, all those things are on the ballot. And I will absolutely reject the notion every single day of the week that there is no difference between Republicans and Democrats. It does matter. It does matter who gets elected and who is in those
seats, because one party wants to protect women and abortion rights, one party wants to stop it and harm millions of American women. That is the bottom line. Do I always agree with the Democratic Party, no. I'm a proud Democrat, of course, and I'll disagree with my party when it's necessary and when it's in the best interest of my state and my district.
But it does matter who is in the seats. It does matter who is committed to truth. It does matter who is committed to democracy, and who gets elected in these seats this November. So, people need to let their voices be heard. And I'm not going to tell people how to vote, but vote your values, vote your conscience. Actually, look at the candidates on your ballot and get involved.
LEMON: Congressman, thank you. I appreciate your candor and your time. Thank you so much.
CROW: Thank you.
LEMON: It has been bombshell after bombshell in the January 6th investigation, and now, Cipollone has been subpoenaed. Will this all this change how the GOP looks at Trump? That's next.
LEMON: The January 6th committee issuing a subpoena to Trump White House counsel Pat Cipollone. CNN learning that he may agree to a limited, transcribed interview with the committee. Still up in the air as whether the testimony would be taped or live.
This comes after repeated requests from the committee for him to appear willingly. They have been trying to get him to answer more questions after he sat for a closed-door interview in April.
Let's discuss now. CNN political analysts Jonathan Martin and Alex Burns, who are the authors of "This Will Not Pass." They join me now. I love having you two on, so let's get to it. Good evening.
Jonathan, Cipollone may agree to this-limited interview when so many others in Trump's inner circle have stonewalled. What does it mean that he is potentially willing to do this even if it's limited?
JONATHAN MARTIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think it opens the door even further, Don, to Trump's inner circle. It sort of gets in the room, if you will, of Trump's White House in the days leading up to January 6th itself, and that could spell trouble for the former president if more of his advisors, more people who are with him in those crucial days in American history, are speaking and are speaking under oath, which is important to note.
So, I think this could be potentially valuable. We have not heard Cipollone on videotape to date, and I think if he does participate, he's going to be able to corroborate or not a lot of what Hutchinson said this week, Don.
LEMON: You guys, Alex, you guys wrote extensively about what was going on in the final days of the Trump White House. And we know Cipollone was deeply involved in these critical moments we. What is the most important thing he could tell the committee?
ALEX BURNS, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Look, I think as Jonathan just alluded to, if Pat Cipollone were to testify and corroborate the elements of Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony, where she was describing the legal warnings from the White House counsel that the president had in the run up to January 6th, and the messages from the White House counsel to senior White House staff about the very real jeopardy that they would be and if they took this path, or that path, that strikes me as hugely, hugely important to a possible criminal case against the former president.
But Don, on the politics of this, and in terms of the way the committee is shaping larger public opinion about what was going on in those days, there's virtually nothing that the former White House counsel could not be valuable in discussing. We have reporting in our book about him talking to at least one Republican senator while the insurrection was in progress about the possibility of the 25th amendment being invoked.
And one of the recordings that we released there's allusions to the White House counsel talking to Republican members of Congress in the days after the insurrection, and urging them not to talk to Donald Trump for their own legal security.
So, if he really does play ball even in a limited way, I think it's just a massive breakthrough for the investigation.
LEMON: Interesting. Jonathan, go on.
MARTIN: Don, just real fast. To put another point on that, in fact, on the afternoon of January 6th, as Alex alluded to, Senator Lindsey Graham, one of the closest Trump allies in the Senate, called Cipollone, and using a direct language, urged Pat Cipollone to tell Trump to urge the rioters to go home, and as we report in our book, he said if Trump doesn't do that, Pat, we're going to call for the 25th amendment.
That's Lindsey Graham on the phone to Cipollone on the afternoon of January 6th. That is about one slice of Pat Cipollone's day on January 6th. There's a lot more that he knows beyond that one call. I think that one call does offer some insight as to just how deep Cipollone was into this moment.
LEMON: Another example, though, Lindsey Graham, a person who says one thing in private, right, and then publicly says something else.
Jonathan, the January 6th -- Alex, excuse me. The January 6th committee vice chair, Liz Cheney is speaking tonight at the Reagan Library. Let's listen to what she said, and then we'll talk. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHENEY: The January 6th committee it has become clear that the efforts Donald Trump oversaw and engaged in were even more chilling and more threatening than we could have imagined. As we have shown, Donald Trump attempted to overturn the presidential election. He attempted to stay in office and to prevent the peaceful transfer of presidential power.
He sent the mob to Washington. He knew they were armed on January 6th. He knew they were angry. And he directed the violent mob to march on the capitol in order to delay or prevent completely the counting of electoral votes. He attempted to go there with them. And when the violence was underway, he refused to take action and tell the rioters to leave.
Instead, he incited further violence by tweeting that the vice president, Mike Pence, was a coward. He said, quote, "Mike deserves it." And he didn't want to do anything and response to the hang Mike Pence chants. It's undeniable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: It's undeniable, she is saying. Alex, she is not mincing words here. She's all in on making sure everyone knows how close that we were to losing our democracy.
BURNS: That's right. You know it's interesting that she used the word undeniable, because of course, some elements of that narrative that she just laid out have been denied. But Liz Cheney, of course, and other members of the committee have access to information that we don't have talking here tonight.
And so, the burden on them in the coming weeks is to lay out all the ways in which they truly can corroborate the elements of this that are in dispute, no matter how narrow, no matter how persuasive they feel the evidence is. The question is, does it stand up first in the court of public opinion and then, in the eyes of the Justice Department, if there's going to be a criminal case.
But Don, listening to Liz Cheney give that kind of speech, it's very, very clear that her long war against Donald Trump is just getting started here. That whatever the outcome of the 1/6 committee's investigation, and whatever the outcome of her own Republican primary battles this summer in Wyoming, she is making no bones about her intention to continue the fight against him, and drive him out of the party, or at least drive him out of American public life if it is at all within her power to do so.
LEMON: Jonathan, is she preaching the choir there speaking at the Reagan Library? I mean, those folks that need to hear her?
MARTIN: Yes. I think it's a mixed bag out there, actually, Don. I think there's going to be some people that audience who are sort of pre-Trump GOP stalwarts who don't like the former president. There's probably also people there who are more friendly with the former president, who I think probably voted for him twice.
I think that she's trying to sort of convert some souls, Don, if you will, in that church. But look, this is as, Alex mentioned, going to be her task in the months and years ahead. It's clear that she views her mission now, Don, in American politics as stopping Donald Trump from reclaiming the presidency. That's obviously what she's using this commission for.
And whether or not there is a legal indictment that comes out of this, it's plain to see that she's trying to summon a political indictment from this commission when it concludes its work this summer. One that yes, will preclude former President Trump from being president again, and perhaps even preclude him from being his party's nominee again.
LEMON: Jonathan, Alex, thanks. Hope to see you soon. I appreciate it.
MARTIN: Thanks, Don.
BURNS: Thanks, Don.
LEMON: It is being called the deadliest human smuggling incident in U.S. history. Fifty-three migrants found dead in an abandoned semi- truck in Texas. Now the Justice Department is taking action.
LEMON: The death toll rising to 53 in Texas and what's being called the deadliest human smuggling case in U.S. history. On Monday, a packed semi-truck was found abandoned in sweltering heat near San Antonio on a remote stretch of road known as the Mouth of the Wolf for how dark it gets. The road runs parallel to interstate 35.
And tonight, the 45-year-old driver of that truck has been arrested on charges related to alleged involvement in human smuggling resulting in death. And he could be facing life in prison. Police say he was found hiding in the brush filed trying to get away. So far, four people have been charged in connection to the tragedy. A worker heard cries coming from the truck and alerted authorities.
The San Antonio police chief telling CNN when he arrived, the four of the tractor trailer was, quote, "completely covered in bodies." And tonight, we have new audio of police as they arrived on the scene and identified one of the suspects.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN: The truck driver is running southbound on foot along the railroad tracks.
UNKNOWN: Can I also get one more here? I have so many bodies here.
UNKNOWN: All we have right now is Hispanic make, maybe wearing a brown shirt, going southbound from that location either along the railroad trucks or towards the mechanic shop right there nearby on New Laredo Highway. K9s have been notified.
UNKNOWN: Three-four-two we got another body just north of the trailer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Sixteen survivors, including four who were underage were rushed to local hospitals suffering from heatstroke and exhaustion. Officials say they were too weak to move, and too hot to the touch. Eleven of those people are still in local hospitals.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott denouncing the tragedy today and announcing new truck checkpoints plan to check trucks like the one used in this incident. We'll keep you updated.
Los Angeles attempting to right a historic wrong. Prime Beach front real estate return to its rightful owners nearly 100 years after a Black couple were harassed in their property and was taken away.
LEMON: A wrong finally being made right in southern California after nearly 100 years. Los Angeles County returning a piece of beachfront property to its rightful owners, the descendants of a Black couple whose land was taken in 1924 by the city of Manhattan Beach. Smack in the middle of the Jim Crow era.
Tonight, the saga of Bruce's Beach, from CNN's Stephanie Elam.
STEPHANIE ELAM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: For decades, this beautiful California beach held shameful secrets of racism and wrongdoing. Stretched out as a physical reminder of how Charles and Willa Bruce were harassed and robbed of their property nearly 100 years ago, when the city of Manhattan Beach seized Bruce's Beach.
DUANE "YELLOW FATHER" SHEPARD, HISTORIAN & SPOKESMAN FOR THE CHARLES AND WILLA BRUCE FAMILY: All we knew is that we're going to step up and speak out and make sure that people never forgot this wrong.
ELAM: A wrong the county of Los Angeles began working to fix last year, culminating with the board of supervisors unanimously voting this week.
UNKNOWN: The motion carries five to zero.
ELAM: To return the land to the Bruce's great, great, grandchildren. Marking the first time in the county's history Black descendants have had their families land returned.
UNKNOWN: We aren't giving property to anyone today. We are returning properly.
ELAM: In 1912, the Bruce's bought the land for more than $1,200. Eventually, they owned two parcels and started a business, offering a place for Black people in southern California to enjoy the scenic vistas with friends and family.
ALISON ROSE JEFFERSON, HISTORIAN: The Bruce's establishment from day one was very successful. They started with just a pop-up tent where people could change their clothes, and they were selling refreshments. Then they later built a two-story building that included a cafe, area to dance, by 1922. Some white folks were up in arms that the Black folks had become -- had such a successful operation. Here
ELAM: Then, in 1924, the city of Manhattan Beach snatched the property under eminent domain to create a park. Eventually, the county took control of the estimated 7,000 square feet of land, which is currently home to a park and lifeguard training facility. The county says it has a two-year agreement to lease the land from the Bruce family for $413,000 a year.
Now, surrounded by million-dollar homes, this is the property that is getting returned to the Bruce family. Now estimated to be worth tens of millions of dollars, as it truly is oceanfront property.
SHEPARD: Well, initially it cost the Bruce family their entire fortune. They originally asked for $125,000 for the two pieces of property, and they didn't get that. The only got $14,250. The loss of the generational wealth that would've been accumulated over the course of 98 years now.
KAVON WARD, FOUNDER, JUSTICE FOR BRUCE'S BEACH: I feel some sense of peace. I feel joy.
ELAM: Kavon Ward stated the push to return Bruce's Beach to its rightful owners in 2020.
WARD: No justice, no peace.
ELAM: After the murder of George Floyd.
WARD: I know that was the catalyst for me. For me to illuminate what had happened to the Bruce's, and for me to move forward and take action to see how I can legally and legislatively get the land back for them.
ELAM: It's a template Ward and the family hope that others will use to also get their land back.
ELAM: While the county is owning up what happened to Bruce's Beach, both Ward and the families say that the city of Manhattan Beach has yet to acknowledge its role in the property's history. Something they say they're going to continue to fight for. Don?
LEMON: Stephanie, thank you very much for that. Former Trump White House counsel Pat Cipollone told Mark Meadows that blood is going to be on your effing hands if people die on January 6th.
Now we are learning that he might agree to a limited interview with the committee.
LEMON: A major development in the January 6th investigation. The select committee issuing a subpoena for former Trump White House counsel Pat Cipollone. He is a key witness to what was going on inside the White House in the days before, during and after the attack on the United States Capitol.
I want to bring in now CNN congressional correspondent, Ryan Nobles, and former Nixon White House counsel, John Dean. Gents, good evening. Thank you so much.
Ryan, I'm going to start with you for the reporting here. What are you learning about the subpoena for Pat Cipollone?
RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think it got to the point, Don, where the committee just felt that they've exhausted every option that they could to try and get Pat Cipollone to try to come in voluntarily. They had informal conversations with Cipollone himself, they had negotiations with his counsel.