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Don Lemon Tonight

Two Top Pence Aides Testify In Criminal Grand Jury Investigation Into January 6th; New Video Reveals Trump Crossed Out Lines In Speech Condemning Lawbreakers; Are January 6 Revelations Registering With Voters?; Far-Right 'Imposter Christianity' And What It's Doing To Democracy; GOP Congressman Attends Gay Son's Wedding After Opposing Protections For Same-Sex Marriage; FBI Found Huawei Equipment In Midwest Could Disrupt US Nuclear Communications. Aired 11p-12a ET

Aired July 25, 2022 - 23:00   ET




DON LEMON, CNN HOST: New tonight, new developments in the DOJ's criminal investigation of January 6th and the efforts to overturn the 2020 election. Former chief of staff to then-Vice President Mike Pence telling CNN that he testified Friday in front of a D.C. grand jury, and "The New York Times" and "The Wall Street Journal" are reporting Pence's general counsel also testified.

CNN's Ryan Nobles is live in the Capitol with the very latest. Good evening to you, Ryan. Once again, doing a great job there. We appreciate having you.


LEMON: What are you learning about these top Pence's aides testifying before the grand jury?

RYAN NOBLES, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Don, always good to be with you. This is a significant development in terms of the Department of Justice investigation into Donald Trump's election interference and how that led to what happened here on January 6th.

Both Jacob and Marc Short were really kind of the first big witnesses that the January 6 Select Committee were able to corroborate that were inside that orbit of the White House, the Oval Office, the West Wing in the days leading up to January 6th.

And what their testimony revealed to the committee at that time was the intense pressure campaign that was put on Vice President Mike Pence during that period of time and the steps that Pence took to resist that.

It also really shed a light on things like the fake elector plot that was going on around the country. These were all things we didn't previously know --

LEMON: Yeah.

NOBLES: -- until the committee was able to really crack the core of Mike Pence and his inner circle. So, the fact that they have been willing to cooperate, yes, they were both under subpoena, we are told, their testimony is behind closed doors to a grand jury, but it is significant move for the Department of Justice.

And more than anything, Don, it shows that they are very much interested in the plot to subvert the will of the American people beyond just the violence that took place here on January 6th.

LEMON: Speaking of January 6th, the Select Committee releasing new evidence today. What does it show, Ryan?

NOBLES: Well, it shows that they left a lot on the cutting room floor last Thursday. It was a lot of information as it relates to Donald Trump's -- what they call his dereliction of duty on January 6th, and in particular, that speech that he tried to give, he did give, but it was a much different speech than what was originally planned on January 7th.

I believe we have a clip that we can show that the committee released today.


UNKNOWN (voice-over): Do you recognize what this is?

IVANKA TRUMP, FORMER SENIOR ADVISOR TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, DAUGHTER OF DONALD TRUMP (voice-over): It looks like a copy of a draft of the remarks for that day.

UNKNOWN (voice-over): Okay. And -- and as you can see throughout the document, there are lines crossed out, there are some -- there are some words added in. Do you recognize the handwriting?

TRUMP (voice-over): It looks like my father's handwriting.

PAT CIPOLLONE, FORMER WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: In my view, he needed to express very clearly that the people who made violent acts and went into the Capitol did what they did, should be prosecuted, and should be arrested.

UNKNOWN (voice-over): It looks like here that he crossed out that he was directing the Department of Justice to ensure all lawbreakers are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. We must send a clear message not with mercy but with justice. Legal consequences must be swift and firm. Do you know why he wanted that crossed out?


CIPOLLONE: And that needed to be stated. They did not represent him or his political views in any form or fashion.

UNKNOWN (voice-over): He also crossed out -- I want to be very clear, you do not represent me, you do not represent our movement. Do you remember -- do you know why he crossed that language out of the statement?

KUSHNER (voice-over): I don't know.


NOBLES: So, to be pretty clear, the stuff that Donald Trump didn't want in that speech, he did not want to point out that he wanted the rioters to be brought to swift justice, that what they did was wrong. And he also crossed out the line that said that those individuals did not represent him. He is the one that rejected that.


You know, the ultimate ending to all of this was a very flimsy three- minute speech that really didn't accomplish much, Don. And as we see as this whole thing played out, the outtakes that they shared on Thursday night and now, this heavy editing of the original script --

LEMON: Uh-hmm.

NOBLES: -- it shows that the former president was rejecting the advice of his advisers at that time and was going off on a completely different direction despite everything that had happened here the day before.

LEMON: Yeah. Ryan, thank you so much. I appreciate that.

NOBLES: Thanks, Don.

LEMON: I want to bring in now Democratic Congressman Eric Swalwell of California. Good to see you. Thank you, congressman. I appreciate you joining us.

REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D-CA): You, too. Thanks. Good to be back.

LEMON: So, as far as we know, Marc Short is the highest-ranking Trump official to the Trump administration to testify in front of the grand jury. What does this tell you about where the investigation

is going, anywhere?

SWALWELL: There is a mount of evidence that the January 6 Committee has put on Donald Trump and all of the arrows point toward his guilt, that this guy, over the months leading up to the election, before the election even happens, so that is going to be a fraudulent outcome, after the election, spent millions on social media ads to assemble a mob, invite them to Washington, D.C., and then on January 6th, aim that mob at the Capitol.

All of the arrows point to him. And finally, it looks like the Department of Justice is starting to go up the wrongs of the ladder and getting much closer to Trump. So, I would be very worried if I was Donald Trump that he may be the target of this investigation.

LEMON: Do you think so? Even if -- even if he --

SWALWELL: How could he not, Don? I mean, how could he not after all of the evidence the committee has shown that this guy's intent was to conspire with the violent mob to try and stop Congress from counting the electoral college votes?

LEMON: They are concerned that it may seem like it is political if they do indeed indict a former president.

SWALWELL: Yeah. You know, I would say we had norms in this country that you would typically, you know, not -- you would try hard not to indict a former president. Gerald Ford, of course, pardoned Richard Nixon. But this ain't any old former president. Right? He broke those norms when he stopped the tradition of a peaceful transition of power.

And so, I think he should be treated no better than any criminal defendant that is being investigated and no worse. That really should be the way to go because otherwise, if we just let him go for the sake of moving on, he is not getting better. In fact, he is getting worse. And he is putting in place people across the country who would go into office, who are inspired by him, who won't honor the next transition of power.

LEMON: And Richard Nixon ended his political career.

SWALWELL: That's right.

LEMON: Right? He left office as president, was driven from office largely by members of his own party.

Listen, there is this new information about the Select Committee, about what Donald Trump -- as you know, they played in the last hearing -- they played the outtakes. On the day of the insurrection, Trump refused to say that he was sickened by the violence at the Capitol. He didn't want to talk about legal consequences for the rioters. And also crossed out the line, you don't represent me or my movement.

I mean, it's stunning. It's a stunning piece of evidence here, but does this amount, again, to a crime?

SWALWELL: Yeah. Well, that line didn't represent what Donald Trump believed because he was with the violent mob who was attacking police officers. This guy is not pro-cop. He is pro-coup. And that is what was reflected in him leaving or taking that language out.

But I do think it goes to his intent, that he wanted the mob to storm the Capitol to stop the count. So, it's an obstruction of Congress, which is a crime. A conspiracy is also a crime. I think the January 6 Committee has laid it all out. And hopefully, an independent Department of Justice sees it that way, too.

LEMON: I want to play some of this. This is from my colleague, Manu Raju, asking Jamie Raskin if he thinks the Select Committee should refer sitting members of Congress who defy subpoenas to the Justice Department on contempt charges. Here is how he responded.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REP. JAMIE RASKIN (D-MD): I don't know that Congress can take a member of Congress to court under the speech of debate clause. Obviously, we've never been in this situation before. But our point here is not to come up with, you know, dozen and dozens of theories and end up in a lot of wild goose chases all over the land.


LEMON: This is the concern when I said that it may seem political if you --


LEMON: -- try to indict a former president. Are you concerned that it's going to happen if shoe is on the other foot and Republican members begin compelling Democrats like you to comply with --

SWALWELL: Yeah, they've already said, right? That they're going to go after me, they're going to go after Adam Schiff.

LEMON: This is what it's going to be, they said.

SWALWELL: Right, which shows that this is really just about retaliation, not anything else. I actually think that we have the power -- we have used it before in Congress -- to use contempt of Congress and to put a fine system in place for anyone, whether it is a member of Congress or anyone outside of Congress. If you are not going to comply, then you are going to be held accountable.

But it's going to be interesting, you know. Look, we have no intention of losing the House. But if these guys ever in the future in any Congress have a subpoena power, how could they expect anyone to comply with it if they are showing themselves --

LEMON: Right.

SWALWELL: -- as being above the law? I think it's an awful precedent that they are setting.

LEMON: Yeah. It's interesting because every time, you know, at the end of the hearing, Liz Cheney will say or someone on the committee will say, you know, you have so much time, you can call the committee. They said they are getting all this evidence. Right?


They said they are getting -- so much evidence coming in. They even may have to continue their work after election day. I mean, can that happen if the Republicans take the House?

SWALWELL: If the Republicans take the House, they shut down this committee, the congressional gold medals don't go to the cops who defended the Capitol, they go to the rioters that Donald Trump inspired because that's who they have shown themselves there with. They are more comfortable with voting -- they are more comfortable with violence than voting. But that's why it's so important that they continue. What is really inspiring to me is that courage with this committee has beget courage. So, as people come forward and show courage like Cassidy Hutchinson, it inspires other people who have information, who may not want to go public, to go public. That's a good thing for our democracy.

LEMON: So, how is your party? How are Democrats going to turn things around? Because Americans are hurting from crippling inflation. They usually blame the party in charge. It's important what happened on January 6th, but we are dealing with inflation now, we are dealing with high glass prices although they're coming down a bit. But they usually blame the party in charge.

SWALWELL: We are party that gets things done. Right? We are a party the see inflation as a real issue. I get it. I do the grocery shopping for three kids and diapers in our house. But we have attacked inflation. The president went after the oil companies and worked with countries that produce oil. And you are seeing gasoline -- it's been down 32 cents over the last four weeks. The Republicans, they just pander to grievances and they don't have a plan.

I actually think this election is about freedom. The freedom for a woman to make her own health care decisions, the freedom for your kids to be free from gun violence and the fear of gun violence, and the freedom for you to have your vote counted when you cast it. And those three freedoms are on the line with Republicans in the majority.

LEMON: No pun intended, do you think those things will tromp the economy and --

SWALWELL: You are seeing it right now. Right now, the Democrats have surged ahead in the generic ballot because of what Republicans' positions are on guns, women's reproductive rights, and showing that they prefer violence over voting.

LEMON: Thank you, congressman.

SWALWELL: My pleasure.

LEMON: Always a pleasure. Good to see you in person. It has been a while.

SWALWELL: Yeah. No kidding.

LEMON: So, the January 6 Committee has dropped one bombshell after another. But is all of this registering with voters worried about how they are going to put food on a table, fill their tanks as we've just been discussing? Big question. Fareed Zakaria right after the break.




LEMON: So, members of the January 6 Select Committee are saying that they are getting so much new evidence that they may need to continue their work after election day. But that can't happen if Republicans take the House come November.

I want to bring in now Fareed Zakaria, host of "Fareed Zakaria GPS" right here on CNN. Fareed, good evening to you. The evidence coming out of the January 6 Select Committee is damning. We are also learning that two former top aides to Mike Pence testified before the grand jury. But do you think all of these developments are registering with voters when most are struggling to pay for groceries, rent, gas, et cetera?

FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST: Well, you are absolutely right, Don, that economic issues, when they are bad, tend to occupy a kind of special dominant place. But let us not forget the story of the last, you know, 10 years in American politics which has been that cultural issues matter a lot to people. People increasingly are defining themselves politically by where they are culturally.

This is one of the reasons why Republicans have tended to do so well. Even in cases where it would maybe be working class whites, republican policies are often not particularly well geared to get those voters economically certainly. They rub certain cultural issues very well. They scratch those itches very well.

Well, this time, really for the first time, we are seeing the Democrats take the offense on some of these cultural issues: abortion, voting rights, you know, the guns.

There are issues on which for some reason, part of it is the overturning of Roe v. Wade obviously. Part of it is just the overwhelming persistence of these gun -- these mass shootings. Part of it is the September -- the January 6 hearings which have been very successful in making people understand both the level of the significance of what happened, but Donald Trump's culpability.

All those three cultural issues are working in the Democrats' favor in a kind of an unusual way.

LEMON: Do you think Democrats will be able to convince Americans that they are working for them? Because in midterms, I mean, it is just a few short months away. And as I just discussed with Congressman Swalwell, his party's efforts to protect democracy are at stake right now.

ZAKARIA: Yeah, your skepticism about this, Don, is well what warranted. Congressman Swalwell said that the generic ballot, the Democrats were surging. I think that might be a slight exaggeration. The Democrats are doing better than they were. The Republicans still have an advantage. They are still leading in the generic ballot.

Unfortunately, because of all kinds of electoral rules and some gerrymandering and things like that, Republicans overperformed. That is to say even when they lose the overall vote, they tend to get a small majority. So, if they're leading, they're going to do even better. So, I don't think that it is enough yet to change the trajectory. But people we are talking about, a republican blowout, that doesn't seem as likely. There is one troubling indicator, though, which remains to be true, which is a very surefire predictor on these things historically.


The president's approval rating continues to be very bad. And of all the kind of indicators of the president party's performance in the midterm, I think -- I don't think I'm wrong at saying this, I think the single most surefire predictor is, what is the president's approval rating?

LEMON: Yeah. Not very good right now.

ZAKARIA: No. Maybe the worst. I think it is tied with Donald Trump for being the worst ever.

LEMON: Yeah. Maybe lower. Listen, so, part of the piece that you wrote -- you've got a lot of people talking, including a lot of people asking me questions about it at dinner parties and what have you, and just coming up to me saying, Fareed Zakaria said this, I can't believe it, whatever, what do you think about this?

Recently, you wrote something for "The Washington Post." You said Democrats need to once more become the party that gets stuff done, build things, and makes government work for people. That's a lot more important to most Americans than using the right pronouns. A lot of pushback for this. Why do you stand by it? What were you thinking, Fareed, I should ask?


ZAKARIA: Well, look, I still 100% stand by it. My point is the most important thing to do is to win. If you can't win, you can't do anything, you can't enact any program, you can't protect any civil rights, you can't -- nobody is going to be protected, looked after, you know, affirmed without that.

So, you've got to figure out what is the way you win. And the way Democrats are going to win is if they show they can be a party that governs and uses government to do stuff.

One of the points I was making is the Democrats passed all these infrastructure bills but very little actually happens because it takes so long to build anything in America, mostly in the blue states, especially in the blue states because there are so many reviews, there are many regulations that make it impossible to build anything.

It's one of the reasons why housing in the blue states is such a nightmare. Housing costs have gone up so much because of combination of nimbyism and environmental reviews, this review and that review. You can't get stuff done. Right?

And if you are the party of government, you are the party that says, we are going to use government to improve your lives. You've got to show that you actually can do it instead of a lot of virtue signaling about this that or the other. I am not against any of those things. I am saying focus.

You know, when you are running an election, you have to prioritize. You have to ask yourself, what is it that you want to stand for? What is it that you want people to know about you? And what Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson and even Bill Clinton understood was, the way you get people to see the Democrats in the right light is to say, we are the party that uses government to help the little guy.

That is what Obama did with Obamacare. That is why it was so important to him and he prioritized Obamacare over everything else. Now, you may look back and say, why didn't Obama do gay marriage, right, at that moment? At that moment, he was saying, my priority is to take this once in a lifetime opportunity I have and to push forward something that is going to raise really tens of millions of Americans who do not have health care. All I am saying is you've got to focus.

LEMON: Uh-hmm. Let me just say this, Fareed. You are right. And even members of the LGBTQ community who talk to me about it believe that you are right. Listen, of course, we can have discussion about pronouns, that is all well and good, but where we are right now culturally, where we are right now politically, where we are right now socially, if you lose your democracy, then you cannot have those conversations about pronouns.

ZAKARIA: Exactly.

LEMON: And the priority right now, not that those things are not on the list, but the priority right now should be saving the democracy, whether you are a Democrat or a Republican, then you can have all of the conversations about what makes democracy great and how different people get to exist within that democracy. Do you understand my point?

ZAKARIA: I totally -- and I think most people do not recognize the degree to which it really is threatened. This is something that you and I have talked about. I've done a special on this.

If Donald Trump were to run in January of 2024, we face an existential democratic crisis because we know that one of two things is going to happen. Donald Trump is going to win or he is going to claim he won, even though he lost, which is going (INAUDIBLE). And all kinds of state level officials and state legislatures have been (INAUDIBLE) for this.

So, the most important thing to do here is to break that momentum. And I don't know and I don't really think that the best path is a legal one. You have to fight this politically. You have to win this politically because there are tens of millions of people out there who are believing something that is a lie, who are believing in somebody who is a demagogue.


You have to break the fever. You got to join this fight.

LEMON: Listen, you have to remember, too, the context in which we are having this conversation. It is not as political activists or members of political parties, but the only party in general for the most part who is operating in general. For the most part, who is operating in reality right now is the Democratic Party, and that is the party that people are relying on to save the democracy.

There are members of the Republican Party who are doing it, but they are few and far between. But in order to save the democracy, people are looking at the Democrats to be able to do that and they have to get their priorities straight in order to be able to do it.

Thank you, Fareed. I appreciate it. Great conversations. See you soon.

ZAKARIA: Thank you, Don.

LEMON: Next, a growing far-right imposter of Christianity and what it is doing to democracy.




LEMON: New details emerging nearly every day in the efforts to overturn the 2020 election on January 6th. For many Americans, it was a big wake up call for the threat to the threat of a growing white Christian nationalist movement. They are calling what they are calling a Christian revolt.

So, joining me now, CNN senior writer and producer John Blake. He has a new piece out. I urge everyone to read it on It is titled "An 'imposter Christianity' is threatening American democracy." John, this is -- god evening. This is a great piece. I saw it. I emailed you. I'm not sure if you got it.


LEMON: I said it was very important and you did a really good job on it. So, thank you for joining us this evening to talk about this.

We saw Christian symbols all throughout the crowd that went to the Capitol on January 6th. What made this a Christian revolt and what does that mean?

BLAKE: Part of it is what you just said, people that were at the insurrection announced it, they announced their fate. If you look throughout the crowd, you saw people praying, people holding their hands up to the heaven.

One of the signs I saw that was really striking, someone had a picture of Jesus with the red "make America great again" hat on top of his head. So, the people themselves, they made their religious intentions pretty obvious. And also, I think you have to understand that a lot of people there, they don't just see this as a political battle, they see it as a spiritual warfare.

LEMON: Uh-hmm.

BLAKE: And because it is a religious-driven movement, you know, a lot of people were driven by religious impulses, I think that makes it actually more dangerous because if it's a democratic movement, people can lose an election, they can acknowledge that someone won, they can move on to the next election.

But when you are talking about a battle between good and evil, people don't just accept defeat and people became more desperate and the end justifies the means.

LEMON: You explain how many Americans have adopted the beliefs of white Christian nationalism without even knowing it. Talk to me about what is driving that. What does that happen?

BLAKE: Well, it's the combination of bad history and bad theology. The bad history comes through books, films, things we have heard that sound pretty innocent. For example, we have heard a lot of people say this nation was founded as a Christian nation. I hear that all the time. Matter of fact, when I was writing the story, someone told me, well, we were founded as a Christian nation.

LEMON: Uh-hmm.

BLAKE: That is not true! You know? We were not founded. The founding fathers had a lot of different theological beliefs and many of them saw how religion had torn the continent apart because of all this religious war. This is not a Christian nation.

And part of the bad theology is that preachers and pastors and Christian leaders pass these messages on in a pulpit. They are people going to churches. They see an American flag by the pulpit. They don't think about it. People will put their -- pledge of allegiance in church. They don't think there is anything wrong with that. So, that is part of, too, how this theology gets passed down.

LEMON: Yeah. Listen, I urge everyone to read it. You also talk about like even if you are a Christian pastor now, don't even think about separating Christianity from politics --

BLAKE: Right.

LEMON: -- because then you won't be a Christian pastor for long or you won't have much of a congregation or people who come to your church and listen to you.

John, thank you. I appreciate it. It's called -- it is on It's by John Blake, analysis by John Blake, "An 'impostor Christianity' is threatening American democracy." I urge everyone to read it. It is fascinating. Nice job. Thank you, John. I appreciate it.

BLAKE: Thank you.

LEMON: GOP congressman attended -- get this -- his gay son's wedding over the weekend. Right? Not news. But what if I told you that congressman voted against protecting same-sex marriage just days before?




LEMON: Republican Congressman Glenn Thompson attended his son, his gay son's wedding last week. And under any other circumstance, it would not be news. Right? Just a happy day for a congressman and his family.

Get this, only three days before the wedding, Thompson voted against a bill to protect same-sex marriage. Thompson was one of 157 House Republicans who voted to oppose the legislation, which would codify same-sex marriages and interracial marriages into law. That bill now needs at least 10 Senate GOP votes to pass the Senate.

So, let's discuss now. CNN political commentators Ana Navarro and Scott Jennings are both here. I mean, what is wrong with -- good evening -- codifying marriage and -- okay, whatever.

Okay, Ana, listen to this. Thompson's office said that the congressman and his wife were thrilled to attend their son's nuptial and are very happy to welcome a new son-in-law to the family. But his office did not respond to CNN when asked why he voted against the bill. Does that make any sense to you?


ANA NAVARRO, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, first of all, let me tell you, Congressman Thompson's son and the new son-in-law are the two most forgiving, gracious, nicest gays I've ever met, because if my father had voted against protecting and safeguarding the sanctity of my marriage three days before my wedding, I think if I had been his son, Congressman Scott would have been sitting outside on a chair in the hottest day of the year, you know, and see how that goes.

I think it's painful, it's painful, and I can't believe people who put -- you know, it's hard to understand people who put politics over country. It's even harder to understand people who put politics and political ambition over family.

And let me talk to you about two Republicans who didn't. One is my friend, Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, former congresswoman, who became a leader on this issue. And another one is Senator Rob Portman, who has got a gay son, William, and who is the person -- the Republican who has signed up to cosponsor this bill in the Senate. And so, I -- you know, politics should not be thicker than blood.

LEMON: So, listen, I do have to say that we, you know, we asked Congressman Thompson to join us on this very program. We haven't heard back. He is welcome, because I want to hear what he actually says. Actually, I would love to have his son and the new husband on. But Scott, what do you think of this?

SCOTT JENNINGS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR, FORMER SPECIAL ASSISTANT TO PRESIDNET TO PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: I don't know Congressman Thompson. I wouldn't pretend to know what the relationship is between him and his son. So, obviously, I think it's very personal.

I did read his office's statement when he cast the vote against it, and his office has said that he was voting no because he thought it was a show vote and it was a distraction from the real issues of the day. So, I take him and his office at his word on that.

You know, I think, obviously, this is a very personal deal between him and his son. I would not even pretend to know what is going on between them. And I'm glad that he went candidly.

I know some people who have had similar situations in their family where the parents chose not to attend and chose not to engage which I think is incredibly sad, to be honest with you, when people can't celebrate his family.

So, it's a strange situation and, you know, it sounds like from his office's statement, Don, they want to keep the relationship between him and his son more private.

LEMON: Yeah. I don't know what other, you know, business of the day, but this is pretty important one. I think marriage between two individuals, regardless of race or sex, that is kind of important.

GOP Senator Marco Rubio, who last week told CNN that the bill was a stupid waste of time, had this to say after criticism from Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, who is gay and in a married relationship but a same-sex marriage relationship.


SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL): I'm not going to focus on the agenda that is dictated by a bunch of affluent, elite liberals and a bunch of Marxist misfits who sadly today control the agenda of the modern Democratic Party.


LEMON: This is, Scott, a real problem for LGBTQ Americans who, you know, could stand to lose rights. Do you think your party is on the wrong side of this issue?

JENNINGS: Well, I think if you look at the polling on gay marriage, specifically, it has moved a long, long way from just 10 years ago, 15 years ago, even really five years ago. I think a majority of Republicans now supported a pretty wide majority of Americans now supported. I do think that you are going to see different people act in different ways for jurisdictional reasons. I think people who represent more rural states and have more weekly churchgoers are going to probably feel one way. I think people that represent other kinds of constituencies are going to feel another.

For what it is worth in the Senate, I think you are going to see a split conference just like you saw in the House. My presumption is, Don, it's going to pass in the Senate. It will get at least 10 Republican votes. I don't know who they all are yet, but my presumption is it's going to get there, which candidly would have been unthinkable 10 years ago.

So, I do think the Republicans have moved somewhat on this. Just at the same time, popular opinion has moved as well.

LEMON: Yeah. And listen, more rural -- I grew up in a rural area. They needed it the most. There were more gays in the rural area than you could shake a stick at.

But listen, but no one came out, and that was very detrimental to a lot of people, that people did not come out and they couldn't live and be themselves. And to this day, they are suffering the consequences of that. I know people who had never came up or who couldn't come out until late in life, as you do. And there was always something that messes with their head and they end up doing bad things and because it's just a ripple effect.

We are talking about people who changed. I mean, Liz Cheney changed. Right? She supported the House bill. She is someone who changed her views because of her gay sister. Right?

NAVARRO: Look, I think it's -- I think it's her gay sister, yes. I think knowing somebody who is gay -- I think knowing somebody who is gay in a committed relationship changes you because you are seeing it.


And I don't know how you -- how Republicans can call themselves the party of family values and vote against safeguarding --

LEMON: And the family of freedom when you talk about freedom and liberty because here is what Liz Cheney said on CNN. She justified the support for the bill on CNN, saying, freedom means freedom for everybody. That is supposed to be the basis of the Republican Party, freedom for everyone.

NAVARRO: And, Don, listen, it is not just Liz Cheney who has changed. Right? Listen, Barack Obama changed on this.

LEMON: Right.

NAVARRO: I remember when I first met Barack Obama in 2008, he was not pro-marriage equality. Today, he is. So, the entire country has changed. Over 71% of Americans now support gay marriage. And this bill was not just about gay marriage. This bill was about interracial marriage --

LEMON: Right.

NAVARRO: -- interethnic marriage, marriage between different nationalities. It is protecting the institution of marriage which Republicans hang their hat on so much. And I think, you know, I can think of so many gay friends of mine, Floridians, who are married, and some of them have gay children who are married, who are Marco Rubio donors. And I'm going to be calling those people. I'm not going to be telling them, you know what, you should tell them, you should tell Marco Rubio that giving him money and supporting him is a royal stupid waste of time.

LEMON: So, only -- so, only gay leftists are -- only leftists are -- leftists are gay? Does that make sense to you?

NAVARRO: Today -- listen, Marco Rubio today, everything that comes out of his mouth, there is a noun, a verb, and socialist Marxist- Leninist.

LEMON: Yeah. I've got to go, Scott. Listen, we will continue this conversation. Thank you. I got to tell you one thing. You talked about Barack Obama. I went to a White House Christmas party with Barack Obama when he was president. And after I came out, he said -- you know, you go to lunch with him --


LEMON: -- he said to me -- he and the first lady said, Don, you did the right thing. That was probably the only thing I remember. He said a lot to me. I remember when he was a state senator, when I was in Chicago, I used to cover him, but that was one of the things that stood out to me. He said, you did the right thing.

NAVARRO: He wasn't pro-gay marriage when --

LEMON: And I said, you did the right thing as well because you changed your mind.

NAVARRO: Yeah, he did.

LEMON: Thank you.

NAVARRO: Joe Biden pushed him into it. I remember.

LEMON: Thank you. We will be back.

JENNINGS: Thanks, Don.




LEMON: Tonight, a CNN exclusive. An FBI investigation has determined that equipment made by the Chinese firm Huawei was capable of capturing and disrupting highly-restricted Defense Department communications, including those used by the U.S. Strategic Command, which oversees America's nuclear weapons.

CNN's Brian Todd has the story for us.


UNKNOWN (voice-over): Three, two, one, turn.

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): America's arsenal of nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles at the ready in underground silos and rural remote areas of the U.S. could be threatened with vulnerabilities tonight.

Officials have long raised alarms about Chinese-made equipment manufactured by the firm Huawei sitting on top of cell towers near U.S. military bases in the rural Midwest, including bases that have nuclear silos.

Multiple sources tell CNN, the FBI determined that that Huawei equipment was capable of capturing or even disrupting restricted U.S. military communications, including communications from U.S. Strategic Command, which oversees America's nuclear weapons.

KATIE BO LILLIS, CNN INTELLIGENCE REPORTER: So, it could allow China to, for example, collect the communications of military officials who are moving around and in between these various different installations.

TODD (voice-over): CNN intelligence reporter Katie Bo Lillis has a new report on a multiyear investigation by U.S. officials into China's ramp-up espionage operations inside the U.S. She says it is not clear if the U.S. Intelligence Community has found whether any sensitive data was actually intercepted and sent back to China from those cell towers where Huawei equipment is used. Experts say even though American nuclear bases use encrypted communications --

UNKNOWN: I see (INAUDIBLE) supposed to be pretty hard, that might not be easy to do, but that doesn't mean our opponents won't try and figure out if they can do it.

TODD (voice-over): But China's alleged spying aspirations don't end there. According to multiple sources familiar with the matter, in 2017, the Chinese government offered to spend $100 million to build an elaborate Chinese garden at the National Arboretum in Washington, a project that would have included temples, pavilions, and a 70-foot pagoda.

But when U.S. counterintelligence officials began digging, CNN sources say, they found that pagoda would have been strategically placed inside the Arboretum's grounds on one of the highest points in the city, just two miles from the U.S. Capitol.

BO LILLIS: So, the concern for counterintelligence officials was that China was going to be able to use this friendship garden, this pagoda, as a prime platform for signals intelligence.

TODD (voice-over): U.S. officials quietly killed that Chinese project at the Arboretum before it got started. As for that Chinese equipment sitting on the cell towers, Katie Bo Lillis reports that in 2019, after the FBI briefed the White House on their existence, the Federal Communications Commission ordered the American companies that were using that equipment to remove it from the cell towers. But not enough money was allocated by Congress to reimburse the companies for that.

BO LILLIS: That equipment is still sitting there and is still in use.

TODD (on camera): The Chinese government strongly denies any efforts to spy inside the U.S. Huawei sent a statement to CNN, saying all of its products imported to the U.S. have been tested and certified by the FCC before being deployed.

Huawei denies that its equipment is even capable of operating in any spectrum that is allocated to the U.S. Defense Department, and the company says it has never been involved in any malicious cybersecurity incidents. Don?


LEMON: Brian Todd, thank you very much for that.

Thank you for watching, everyone. Our coverage continues.



ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening. We begin tonight with major new developments where the January 6 hearings left off.


REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): We have much work yet to do, and we will see you all in September.


COOPER: Well, one thing that came clear today, nobody is waiting until September. For starters, we learned tonight that Marc Short, former Vice President Pence's chief of staff, testified under subpoena last week before a federal grand jury in Washington. That is according to a source familiar with the matter.

This is significant because Short was there in the room for some of the key moments on and around the 6th.


He is also the highest profile witness known to have testified so far. We will talk more about what that might say about the Justice Department's criminal investigation in how far it can go.