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Don Lemon Tonight

Federal Grand Jury Has Subpoenaed Pat Cipollone; Results Coming In Key Primary Races Across The U.S.; CNN Projects Right To Abortion Maintained In Kansas State Constitution; Legendary Voice Of The Dodges, Vin Scully Has Died. Aired 11p-12a ET

Aired August 02, 2022 - 23:00   ET




DON LEMON, CNN HOST: So, this is just in to CNN, a source confirming to CNN a federal grand jury investigating January 6th has subpoenaed the former White House counsel, Pat Cipollone. ABC News is first to report that. CNN has now confirmed that as well.

Abby Phillip, David Chalian, Mark Preston, David Axelrod are all back with me here.

Thanks so much for joining. This is big news. What say you, David Chalian?

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: I think we've seen over the last couple of weeks this escalation in this grand jury process that is separate and apart from all of the DOJ investigations and prosecutions into those that actually stormed the Capitol and broke into the Capitol. This has now has been and we have seen, as Pence's aides had been called in and what have you, getting into the inner sanctum. We don't get more inner sanctum than the White House counsel --


CHALIAN: -- who we know through testimony given to the January 6 Committee was running down the hall to the Oval Office to try and stop meetings from progressing --


CHALIAN: -- who was trying to get the White House chief of staff alive and awake, and then engaged in what was going on the sixth.

So, I know that Cipollone and his team are going to go through a whole host of negotiations and conversations with the DOJ about what he can or what he can't say.

But this DOJ investigation and this subpoena of Cipollone, this is as serious as a heart attack.

ABBY PHILLIP, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah. CHALIAN: I don't think DOJ is fooling around here at all. I think this is going to be an investigation that is going to be with us for quite some time.

DAVID AXELROD, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR, FORMER OBAMA SENIOR ADVISER: There was a negotiation with the House Committee because the House is racing the clock.


AXELROD: They need to get what they are going to do done because they were concerned about the Congress turning over in January. The Justice Department will pursue him, and they are going to test this issue of privilege because there is no privilege if it relates to the commission of a crime, and they will -- they will pursue it in a way that the House cannot.

PHILLIP: And I think the question going forward will be when they do pursue it, and it goes to the courts, how quickly does it get resolved, even in these federal probes.

In the past, some of the judges and some courts have taken a long time to come down in rulings about whether or not privilege applies to certain circumstances. A court that moves much more quickly could have this moving along.

And I think either way, though, it puts Cipollone in a position that he wasn't in with the January 6 Committee. He basically was able to go into a room with the January 6 Committee and say, here is what I'm willing to talk about, here is what I'm not.


PHILLIP: And they were amenable to that. But it is not going to be that kind of situation when you are talking about a federal grand jury and when you're talking about federal crimes.

LEMON: You guys are -- hold on, Mark. You guys are right because they said that -- what -- ABC News is reporting that attorneys to Cipollone, they are going to try to negotiate this like they did with the House Select Committee investigating the attack, which you mentioned here, they are expected to engage in these negotiations around any appearance while weighing concerns regarding potential claims of executive privilege. So, you are going to have that dance.


MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: As they should. I mean, for somebody who was -- you know, who has been in the West Wing --


PRESTON: -- and has been in that situation, there has to be some kind of privilege given to --

LEMON: He is the former White House counsel.

PRESTON: Right. But to David's point, if there is a crime being commissioned, then there is no executive privilege. What is interesting about Cipollone is that he is not -- he is not a MAGA guy. You know, he is somebody, you know, who took a job, went in and did it. He was very open with the January 6 Committee, which I was kind of surprised.

I mean, again, he went in and negotiated it. But to have him come in and say some of the things that he did on videotape that was showed, you know, during the hearings was amazing, I thought. It really helped make their case.

LEMON: I want to get some legal analysis now. Elie Honig joins us now. Elie, when you look at what's happening now, Pat Cipollone, grand jury, a federal grand jury subpoenaed the former White House counsel, Pat Cipollone, for this investigation into January 6th, what does this mean?

ELIE HONIG, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Well, Don, Pat Cipollone is the ultimate insider. And I think we have seen -- he was involved in or present for or witness for so many of the key conversations. And generally speaking, his role was as a voice of reason, telling them, no, you can't take over, the Justice Department. No, you can't get on board with this fake elector scheme. No, John Eastman's theories are not legal, they not constitutional.

And I think one of the big questions here, and I think Abby Philip was just alluding to this is, how hard is DOJ going to push back against these executive privilege claims? Because if we think of Pat Cipollone's videotape deposition testimony, which we saw in some of the hearings, there were these moments where he was asked, what was your conversation with Donald Trump? Pat Cipollone will sort of pause, turn to his lawyer, a guy named Michael Purpura, who I used to work with at DOJ, and then Cipollone would just say, privilege, and he would not answer.

So, is DOJ willing to go to courts to force him to give those answers or are they willing, are they going to be able to negotiate some sort of point where they agree on what Cipollone will and won't give them? If they do go to the coats, A, that's going to be a very high stakes battle, and B, that could take quite a while. That could take months --

LEMON: Elie --

HONIG: -- and months.

LEMON: I mean, this does escalate. This takes it to a whole new level. I mean, if you have the former White House counsel being subpoenaed, this really ratchet things up.

HONIG: Yeah, there's no questions about it. I mean, when we add this to what we already know about who the committee is speaking with, I mean, this is a next-level up from Marc Short, from Greg Jacob. This is the White House counsel. He is in all the rooms for all the big meetings. So, this is yes, another sign of just how serious and how focused DOJ is on not just the White House but the inner sanctum of the Trump White House.

LEMON: All right. Elie, thank you very much. I appreciate that. Again, the news that we are reporting, CNN is confirming, ABC News first reported a federal grand jury has subpoenaed the former Trump White House counsel, Pat Cipollone, in its investigation into January 6th. We'll continue to follow this, just in to CNN.

But we -- this is election night in America. We need to talk about that because results are coming in at this hour in five key states, including Arizona, where election deniers are all over the ballot. Here is news out of Kansas, voters rejecting an amendment that would have weakened the right to abortion under that state's constitution.

I want to get to CNN's John King. He is at the magic wall for us. John, good evening to you. What stands out to you at this hour?

JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, we're beginning to get some votes out in the West Coast as you move to the west, including the Arizona governor's race. Let me just give you that to give you the update at the new votes.

Karrin Taylor Robson, she is the more establishment candidate. Mike Pence endorsed her. Kari Lake is the Trump-endorsed candidate who says if she loses tonight, there must be cheating going on. About half of the vote counted so far. We have a long way to go.

But right now, Karrin Taylor Robson, the establishment candidate is leading at 50% if you round that up, to 41% if you round that up. She is leading because of this lead in Maricopa County, the largest county in the state, Don. Sixty percent, more than 60% of the state population lives in Phoenix and the suburbs around it in Maricopa County. So, Karrin Taylor Robson taking early lead there.

Very significant because there is a possibility, if Kari Lake wins and if you look down ballot in Arizona, it is possible that Republicans could nominate a statewide slate of election deniers. Robson is not one of them although she has been a softer on the question in the past. So, that is just one of the things we are watching.

A minute ago, you mentioned the Kansas vote, which we have called. This is of national significance. This is a state constitutional ballot initiative in Kansas but of national significance because in the first time, voters get their say.

Post Dobbs, meaning in post Roe v. Wade America where the Supreme Court says states now can now decide to ban abortions, the voters of Kansas are saying, no, they do not want to water down their state constitution which protects abortion rights.

So, a significant development in Kansas, but also, Don, one with national implications as state by state goes through the abortion debate and as Democrats hope that the Supreme Court decision, a setback for Democrats, pro-abortion rights Democrats, ends up being a motivation for voters come November.

LEMON: All right, Mr. King, standby. I want to get to CNN's Kyung Lah. She is in Arizona where the latest is happening with the key races there.


The votes are starting to come in. What do you have for us, Kyung?

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You can start to see some of the people in this room. I am with Karrin Taylor Robson. This is her watch party. Some applause starting to pop in this room as these numbers are trickling in.

What the campaign was specifically looking for is that margin that John was just talking about, it is about 9% margin. The campaign was hoping for that kind of a number.

The expectation is that Kari Lake, who had been encouraging her voters to vote on election day, that if Robson have any chance of winning, she needed to have a significant margin in that first election result, the first one that we are seeing tonight.

So, this room at least is sounding pleased as they start to hear about these results. But as John pointed out, you know, it is very early, there are still a lot of votes to be counted, especially those votes that came in today that were voting in person. Don?

LEMON: The noise level has certainly increased since --

LAH: The numbers start trickling in.

LEMON: The noise level has certainly increased since last week. We met you at the headquarters there for Robson. What are you hearing? Are you able to talk to any of the voters?

LAH: We have not talked to many of the voters here yet because these votes are just coming in right now. What I can tell you, though, is that you can feel the mood in this room. There was this feeling of, we are holding our breath. So much is at stake if you talk to the people in this room.

If this is the republican establishment, this is the heart of what has long been known as the Arizona Republican Party. The framework of it being the party of Barry Goldwater, of John McCain. And Doug Ducey as of late -- Ducey, Mike Pence, they came out for Karrin Taylor Robson, the establishment candidate.

This group is not sure if she would be able to pull it off. There is still a lot of nerves here. They do not know what's going to happen as these results start to come out. Again, very early in the night. The first, you know, election results, some positive signs there but, again, very, very early.

LEMON: I hope you got the java (ph) ready because you are going to need it, Kyung Lah. Thank you very much. Kyung Lah joining us from Arizona there. Thank you very much. We appreciate it.

Listen, we've got -- I've got my dream team here on the set. We're going to continue to talk about what is happening. We are going to take a quick break, though. When we come right back, January 6 news tonight, a source confirming to CNN that a federal grand jury investigating January 6 has subpoenaed the former White House counsel, Pat Cipollone.




LEMON: All right, we are back now. Election night in America results are coming in. CNN's John King at the magic wall looking at all of the key races for us tonight. So, John, talk to me, can we go to Michigan to talk about what is happening there with Peter Meijer?

KING: We can go to Michigan. You asked about Peter Meijer. For those at home, they might not recognize the name, one of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump. John Gibbs is Trump- endorsed opponent as Donald Trump seeks vengeance. We have seen this in races with Republicans he opposes. Look at how close this is. Peter Meijer right now ahead, Don, by 248 votes, 50.2 to 49.7.

This is a district, Grand Rapids, and then to the west, to the border, in Michigan. Yeah, we are going to be counting this for a while. We think about 63% of the vote coming in. So, you got, you know, four in 10 votes still to count (ph), a little shorter than that, and a 248- vote margin right now.

This is one of three tests tonight. There are two primaries out in Washington State as well. The polls are just starting to close out there. Three of the 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump are being challenged, and Trump has endorsed their opponents with potentially the Trump vengeance towards -- through the Republican Party. This one might not be settled tonight, but we are still counting votes, 248 votes right now, Peter Meijer holding on.

Democrats, Don, interesting, they actually put some money in behind John Gibbs. They wanted him to be the nominee. They think they might have a chance to take this seat in November if John Gibbs is the nominee. We will see. We will be counting votes here and then those two counties out of Washington State, as well.

LEMON: Mr. John King, thank you very much. Let's bring it to the room, as they say. Let's talk about Peter Meijer and talk about all of this --what is happening with these House Republicans.

Ten House Republicans who voted to impeach Trump facing a far-right primacy challenge the Democrats have propped up. But I think what is interesting, we are talking in the break about what is happening with Peter Meijer. This could be a real test or not such a great night when it comes to Peter Meijer and Donald Trump. CHALIAN: Right. I mean, obviously, Donald Trump has a little school board of all these folks he is trying to exact vengeance against, who voted to impeach him in the aftermath of January 6th. Peter Meijer one of them. You know, John King was saying, people at home may not know Meijer. You know where you know the name Meijer, in Michigan, because it is like --


CHALIAN: But he is a Republican in a different mold than the modern- day Trump-dominated Republican Party. He has been sort of fighting that fight. If he is able to successfully withstand this challenge from a Trump-backed challenger, John Gibbs, who served in Trump's Housing and Urban Development Department, this will be sort of the first pushback on that vengeance toward that we see in this primary season in the Republican Party.

And by the way, what is -- what the Democrats did in this race could -- look how close it is. It could really potentially be a factor here. David, I know you're no fan of what Democrats have done --



CHALIAN: -- because you think that they are playing with fire here.

AXELROD: It is not just playing with fire. I think when a person puts their career on the line to vote for impeachment, knowing that Trump is going to come after them and that it may end -- he is a very young man -- end his career, that Democrats should not be meddling to lift an election denier in a primary against him. I don't think -- if you want to be the pro-democracy party --


AXELROD: -- then don't go after a guy in his own primary for standing up for democracy. If you want to compete with him, compete with him in a general election.

LEMON: Should they be supporting him?

AXELROD: No. I mean, I think that there are real differences philosophically between Peter Meijer and Democrats. But it is not over to issue of democracy and by lifting up an election denier against him and punishing him of -- essentially punishing him for taking a pro- democracy position, I think, Democrats, you know, call in to question their own commitment.

PHILLIP: Yeah, it is a cynical move, I mean, on the Democrats' part. And to your point, Don, I mean, there was a time when, you know, this was a political tactic that was sort of just about, oh, you prefer to run against this guy who feels this way about taxes and not that guy.

But Democrats are the ones who are making an argument to voters that this is an existential threat to our democratic system. It is hard to make that case to voters on the one hand and then on the other hand spend tons of money boosting people who are election deniers.

It's a repudiation of that in this particular race. I think also, one of the problems with that strategy beyond this race is that some of these people can win.

AXELROD: Yeah. They are playing with fire.

PHILLIP: Some of these people might actually win and you cannot guarantee that voters are just going to reject them because you think that they are too radical to be elected.

AXELROD: 0The one thing I will say is what Democrats are doing are running ads in republican primaries, saying, this candidate is too conservative about the opponents of the person that they're trying to beat. He is pro-Trump, he is an election denier, and so on. And there is a market for that in the republican primaries. If there wasn't a market for it, it won't work.

So, I mean, they are playing with fire. There are primal forces there that they are playing with. So, you know, that has to be noted. But absolutely, you know, one of these (INAUDIBLE) could get through. One of these anti-democracy (INAUDIBLE) could get through. If Meijer were to lose distress tonight, he absolutely still could, Democrats can claim that they defeated him. Is that a victory that they want to claim?

LEMON: It is interesting because we are still talking about impeachment. I guess it still does play, you know, in Kansas or wherever. That is still a factor for the Trump voter.

PRESTON: You know, it does. You know, there is definitely no honor in politics, necessarily, but I do think over the past 20 years, we have seen whatever honor that was in politics has kind of drifted away. To David's point, you know, God rests his soul, about the Democratic Party getting involved in these primaries, you know, it is -- it wouldn't be historic first for major Democratic leaders to stay out of certain races.

We started (ph) congressional delegations where Harry Reid, God rests his soul, but Harry Reid specifically would not get involved in primaries in his own state. Even though he was a Senate Democratic leader, he would not get involved not because -- because he did not feel that it was appropriate for him to do so.

To David's point, how does a Democratic partner look at itself when it is propping up election deniers with the goal of trying to beat them in the end but could still lose? It is just --

AXELROD: One quick point on your impeachment point, one person who is trailing tonight is Rusty Bowers, who we all know played such a significant role in these hearings. A former speaker of the Arizona House who is running for the state Senate today, losing, trailing, and that is completely about impeachment. He has represented that area forever.

The Republican Party of Arizona censored him in the last weeks of the campaign just to make the point, just to make the point that he was an apostate because he stood up to democracy even though it might hurt Donald Trump.

LEMON: Yeah. Stick around, everyone. We got much more to come. Maybe the biggest result of the night in Kansas, voters maintaining the right to abortion in Kansas State Constitution.




LEMON: So, Kansas voters have decided to maintain the right to an abortion in their state's constitution. That according to the projection from the CNN decision desk. It's up on your screen now. Take a look at it.

Back with me now, Abby, David, David, Mark, and David.

PHILLIP: Not enough David.

LEMON: How many David do I have?

PHILLIP: Not enough.

LEMON: Not enough David. It is all about David tonight. But also joining us is Areva Martin, who is our CNN legal analyst, to walk us through this. So, Areva, thanks for joining us here. What do you make of this? It's surprising to me considering that this is Kansas, right, red, middle of the country. So, is this a harbinger of things to come for, you think, for Republicans come November? Too early to tell?

AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST, CIVIL RIGHTS ATTORNEY: I think it is, Don. I think what it tells us is that abortion is on the ballot. Kansas saw a record turnout in this election. They talk about this being comparable to 2008 when Obama was on the ballot.


Even if voters are not pro-abortion, I think voters are saying we are anti extremism by Republicans, Republican lawmakers that are seeking to deny women the right to make decisions about their own reproductive health. I think this is going to be a difficult issue for Republicans moving forward.

Voters are galvanized around this issue, to support and to protect women's right to choose. They rejected this constitutional amendment, which would have given Republican lawmakers in the state of Kansas the right, it would have given them the power and authority to make decisions about whether abortions would be banned in that state.

Everyone expected that if they were given that authority, they would absolutely ban or severely restrict abortions in the state of Kansas. This is a big win for women, a big win for pro-choice advocates. LEMON: But there is some history to this, Areva, because this vote comes -- there was a 2019 state Supreme Court ruling in Kansas that found that state constitution does protect the right to an abortion. That was a 6-1 decision.

MARTIN: Absolutely. That's why this amendment -- it is not surprising to me that the voters in Kansas rejected the amendment to try to remove this constitutional protection under the Kansas constitution because the Supreme Court in Kansas had already spoken, had already said, this constitutional protection was valid and the voters in Kansas today confirmed that women should have the right to choose in that state.

LEMON: So, listen, back to the floor here. You know, there is going to be this consternation about, oh, the language was ambiguous. We were talking about (INAUDIBLE) who was there. And I heard -- as I said, listening to conservative pundits either on radio or television saying, well, voters are confused, they seemed to like flummoxed that Kansas could vote in the way that they were voting, that it was looking like it was going. It doesn't seem that it was ambiguous to me. Is that just an excuse?

PHILLIP: Look, I mean, I think that given -- it's a couple of things here. One, the result at the moment is pretty lopsided, okay, for what it is, 88% in. But the other thing is that with turnout being extremely high in an off-year scenario, if you are leaving your house to go vote on a ballot initiative in the state of Kansas, you probably know what you are voting about.

I think that in this case, they were asking voters, do you want to change the status quo or leave the status quo? If you are leaving your house, you're probably going to leave your house to keep the status quo that you have been living under.

So, I think that that -- we can only surmise that that is what is going on here just given how lopsided the numbers are and given the turnout levels.

And then one other point I'll make. The state of Kansas, their governor, Laura Kelly, is a Democrat. She is a Democrat who has pushed back on abortion restrictions in the past and is not backing down. She is up for reelection. That is, I think, in and of itself, something extraordinary, but it tells you a lot about how she thinks this issue can play, even in her state where Trump won --


PHLLIP: -- by a very large margin. She is describing it as an extremist effort, as an effort being pushed by a small minority of even the Republican Party to further restrict abortion. That is a warning shot that she is sending to Republicans.

AXELROD: It will be interesting to see if there is a delta between the number of people who voted on this initiative and voted on other races, whether there are people who just came out to vote in these races. Don, the turnout is everything here. The reason parties in power almost always lose ground in midterm elections is because the party that's out of party comes out in greater numbers than the party in power.

If Democrats are motivated by this decision to come out in unusually large numbers, and we saw something like -- you know, we saw a huge turnout in 2018 when Trump was president. If this becomes a motivator, it will have an impact on some of these races. It may not change the fundamental point that it's going to be a tough democratic year, but it could be a lot less tough because of this.

LEMON: I don't think you just have Democrats voting on this particular --

AXELROD: Absolutely. Absolutely.

LEMON: Republican women feel like this is an issue --

AXELROD: If they feel that is at stake in the Senate races, for example, if you've got a governor's race in particular, ardently anti- abortion rights candidate on one side and a pro-abortion rights candidate on the other side, those moderate Republicans may go that way. Independent voters may go that way.

CHALIAN: I think it is such an important point you're making, David, because we have for much of this year seen where the president's polling numbers are.


We see how much harm inflation is causing families and the real concern. We see an electorate that is not pleased with the direction of the country. All of these things that tell us this should be like a wave year for Republicans.

And what we're starting to see are some data points that suggest, again, not that the environment is overturned, this should be a good Republican year, but there are some data points here that perhaps that weight is not going to press quite as high as a lot of folks had initially thought, and this Kansas vote is one of those data points.

The rallying around what you are seeing in sort of organizing around the states, around the Supreme Court's overturning of Roe, we see it here play out in Kansas, but you're seeing the organizational efforts elsewhere, and it is going to become -- you could tell from what Democratic candidates are doing tonight in response to this. They are going to centralize this as a part of their campaign in some very key contests.

And, as John was saying, if you can bring back enough of the independents that were so repelled by Trump --


CHALIAN: -- you can actually fortify and mitigate some of the losses, the Democratic Party can potentially, if they can get some --

LEMON: Hold on, one second. I'm having deja vu. I remember, there was supposed to be this red wave list a couple of years ago. Was that it? It didn't happen. It was like -- they got a blue title wave or something. I forget what happened but there was a similar thing where people were predicting that there would be this big red wave and it did not happen.

PHILLIP: Well, I also think, you know, the party out of power, their simplest argument is, why not, give us a shot. And the problem with this cycle, I think, for Republicans is that it's easy for Democrats to make the case of, why not, right?

When you have a Trump factor, when you have things like abortion, when you have these issues that get to people's -- the front of people's minds, it makes it easier for Democrats to say, here is why not, and I think that makes the argument a lot --

AXELROD: And that is the test for Democrats to make this not just the referendum on the direction of the country or the economy or the president but a choice.

And there are three things working here. One is the Dobbs decision. Another is the hearings. I would argue that in the midst of all of this came the attack in Uvalde and the attack in Highland Park. And these all came together to create an argument that the Republicans are too extreme. And for most of the last year, the Republicans are making the argument that Democrats are too extreme and it was working with independent voters. I think this has the potential to pull some of them back.

CHALIAN: Which is not to say that Republicans are not still favored to win the House of Representatives. I want to be clear about that. They are!


CHALIAN: But it just -- the political environment may be shifting. It's a dynamic thing. And it may be shifting a bit right before our eyes.

PHILLIP: And I hope the Democrats are getting things done in Washington. That actually helps them a lot.

LEMON: Areva Martin, you know, there's been talk about the language when it comes to what is happening and what has happened in Kansas. And, look, everyone is saying, well, it's ambiguous, whatever. But you have people there watching the local news, they are being instructed by certain political groups, telling them which way to vote. I don't think that that's an excuse -- that should be an excuse. The language is ambiguous.

Yes, would you like to leave the Constitution the way it is, or no, would you want -- a no vote would leave the 22-week law in place. So, I think it was pretty solid, the language and whether you want to do it or not.

AREVA: Yeah, I don't think the language has anything to do with this victory for pro-choice, Don. I think people understand what is at stake and they're not willing to allow Republican lawmakers as it has been described to control (INAUDIBLE) women's right to choose.

And I think we're going to see that this ballot initiative, a similar ballot initiative is going to be on the ballot in Kentucky in November. And then we see states like California and Vermont where there's efforts to enshrine in the constitutional rights that women have to abortion.

So, that created this patchwork across the state, every state, basically, doing something different, making it very difficult for voters to know what is going on. But I think this Kansas vote tonight is a clear victory.

We can argue about language where people know what they know. People are not stupid. And very rarely do people get motivated to go out and vote on valid initiative. So, the fact that we have this high voter turnout, we have to call it what it is, it's a victory for women's rights.

LEMON: Areva, thank you. Thanks to everyone else as well. I got to get to the breaking news and it is sad news tonight.


Baseball world mourning the loss of Vin Scully, legendary voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who died today at the age of 94. The Dodgers Organization described Scully as much more than the voice of the team, saying that he was their conscience, their poet laureate, capturing their beauty, and chronicling their glory from Jackie Robinson to Sandy Koufax, Koufax, Kirk Gibson to Clayton Kershaw. We have lost an icon, said Dodgers' president and CEO Stan Kasten.

We are going to have more on his life in just a moment.




LEMON: So, former Trump White House Counsel Pat Cipollone has been subpoenaed by a federal grand jury investigating efforts to overturn the 2020 election. A source tells CNN that now Cipollone and his attorneys are discussing ways they are going to handle appearance before the grand jury, including how to deal with executive privilege issues. That is what the source says. ABC News is first to report the subpoena.

I want to bring in now CNN senior legal analyst Elie Honig and CNN global affairs analyst Susan Glasser. Good evening to both of you. Elie, how big of a deal is the subpoena? Talk to us about the impact of Cipollone's cooperation, what it could have on the Justice Department's investigation.

HONIG: Well, Pat Cipollone was right at the heart of virtually every stage in the entire effort by Donald Trump and others around him to try to block Congress and steal the election. Virtually, every one of the key moments, the meetings in the Oval Office, the meetings with DOJ, the meetings with other advisers who were in Donald Trump's ear, Pat Cipollone is there. And often, Pat Cipollone's role was to tell Donald Trump, no, we can't do this, to push back against the worst excesses and the worst abuses.

So, Don, this tells me that the DOJ is looking at the inner, inner circle of the Trump White House.

LEMON: Susan, everyone will try to read something into this. I'm not sure what there is to be read into it, but I'm going to ask you. Should this latest development be seen as a big wind toward protecting democracy in America?

SUSAN GLASSER, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Well, look, Don, I mean, first of all, it is more than a year and a half after January 6 itself and we only are just now getting indication of this Justice Department-convened federal grand jury with testimony by some former senior Pence aides in recent weeks and now the subpoena to Pat Cipollone.

So, we don't know what it means. There have been no charges of anyone who actually were involved in convening all those people and bringing them to the Capitol that they stormed on January 6.

So, you know, a note of caution there. But Pat Cipollone was a crucial figure in all this, not only pushing back, but he is the one who had to evaluate and explain why the crazy schemes were not just crazy but illegal. To me, that has always been very important.

Donald Trump was told repeatedly that it was not just ill advised, but that it was not constitutional for him to demand that Vice President Pence single-handedly invalidate the results of the election. He proceeded anyway.

So, I do think that Cipollone, who has never publicly broken with the president, that his private dealings in this matter are crucial to understanding what was essentially a coup against American democracy.

LEMON: Susan, Elie, thank you very much. We will be right back.




LEMON: More on our sad news tonight. The baseball world mourning the loss of Vin Scully, legendary voice of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who died today at the age of 94. Andy Schowls has the life and times of an icon.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) VIN SCULLY, SPORTS COMMENTATOR, LEGENDARY VOICE OF LOS ANGELES DODGERS: Hi everybody. A very pleasant Thursday evening to you wherever you may be.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR (voice-over): Vin Scully, the revered face of the Dodgers, worthy of a yearbook cover. Flip inside and see the schoolboy who always wanted to become a sportscaster.

SCULLY: We had a big, old radio on four legs, and I would crawl underneath the radio so that the speaker was directly over my face. And I would be listening to a game that meant absolutely nothing to me, Alabama, Mississippi. But what intrigued me and thrilled me was the roar of the crowd.

SCHOLES (voice-over): The captivated youngster went on to play centerfield at Fordham University, graduating with a degree in radio. Scully broke in as an announcer with the Brooklyn Dodgers in the 1950, as the yearbook shows, mentored by legends Connie Desmond and especially Red Barber.

UNKNOWN: He was, indeed, another father. And eventually, through many, many years later, he wrote in a column, maybe I was the son that he had never had. Maybe the red hair had something to do with it. But (INAUDIBLE).

SCHOLES (voice-over): Scully would make any father proud. Honored by the Baseball Hall of Fame, lauded by critics, including the author of "Voices of the Game."

CURT SMITH, AUTHOR (voice-over): I think anyone who really has studied baseball broadcasting or indeed heard Vin Scully would agree that Scully is the Roy Hobbs of baseball broadcasting, the best ever was. He has converted more casual fans into hardened fans and more non-baseball fans into baseball fanatics than virtually any broadcaster that I can think of.

SCHOLES (voice-over): What words can describe Scully's words? Lyrical, poetic, master storyteller.

SCULLY: That 75 club which bowed finally to the big red machine --

SCHOLES (voice-over): But Scully thinks he made his mark with silence, by not over-announcing the moment.

SCULLY (voice-over): He is gone.

SCHOLES (voice-over): When Kirk Gibson hit the dramatic homerun to beat the Oakland A's in the 1988 World Series, Scully didn't say a word for more than a minute. Then --

SCULLY (voice-over): In a year that has been so improbable, the impossible has happened.

SCHOLES (voice-over): Scully called the New York Mets come back against the Red Sox in the 1986 World Series --

SCULLY: Behind the bag! It gets through Buckner! Here comes Knight and the Mets win it!

SCHOLES (voice-over): He also delved into football, calling The Catch, Montana to Clark in the 49ers famous playoff win over the Cowboys.


SCULLY: Throwing in the end zone (INAUDIBLE).

SCHOLES: Scully's popularity often exceeded the players. Late in his career, he served as grand marshal of the Rose Parade in ballgame (ph). In 2016, he signed off for the last time as a regular broadcaster after 67 seasons calling Dodgers' games. Weeks before hanging up his mic, Scully riveted a crowd at the Reagan Library.

SCULLY: If I have a trademark, it would be to call the play as quickly and ably can as I possibly can, and then shut up and listen to the roar of the crowd. And even to this day, when that crowd roars, I'm that little eight-year-old kid curled underneath the radio back in New York City listening to Alabama, Tennessee.


LEMON: May he rest in peace.

Thanks for watching, everyone. Our coverage continues.