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Don Lemon Tonight
Investigators Want More Footage; Trump's Team Request For A Master; Mitch McConnell Less Confident Of A Red Wave; Police Officers Removed From Duty; Dr. Anthony Fauci Retiring This December. Aired 10- 11p ET
Aired August 22, 2022 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LAURA COATES, CNN HOST: Hey, thanks for watching everyone. I'll be back tomorrow night. DON LEMON TONIGHT starts right now with of course, Don Lemon. Hey, Don Lemon.
DON LEMON, CNN HOST: Hey, Don lemon. Got you.
COATES: Jinx, you owe me Coke. That's the holding thing, right? Coca- Cola you very specific.
LEMON: Wait a minute. I'm looking --
COATES: Very specific.
LEMON: -- like both of us. I mean, I'm just looking at a different monitor. You were way last week. Were you on vacation?
COATES: You seem, do you see my --
LEMON: We both have a tan. Yours is fresher than mine.
COATES: Well, I mean, I woke up like this. I don't know what you did. I just, were you in makeup? Was there a bronzer used?
COATES: I'm like, it's a, it's a, this, I was in Puerto Rico.
LEMON: Good for you.
COATES: Where were you? Just out and about where you go, wherever it is, you do you?
LEMON: I don't -- don't do this to me.
COATES: I don't. No, don't let's not compare vacations because America, I guarantee you Don Lemon just won. So that's OK.
LEMON: I was, this is what I was out of the country.
COATES: Wonderful. OK. Thank you.
LEMON: I'm glad you had a great time and you look great. Your tan is great and you look relaxed and great job as usual. I'll see you tomorrow, Laura Coates.
COATES: Bye, Don Lemon.
LEMON: Bye, Laura Coates.
Boy. It's Monday, everyone. How you doing?
So, this is DON LEMON TONIGHT. And we have a CNN exclusive.
Sources are telling CNN that the Justice Department is issuing a new grand jury subpoena to the National Archives for more documents as part of the January 6th investigation. Now let's pause there. OK. To give you some perspective, because that's also part of what we do here, right?
Because this former president has managed to launch not one, but two Justice Department investigations that involve the National Archives. One into January 6th, the one with this subpoena today, the latest sign that the DOJ is broadening its investigation into the potential role that then White House staff may have played in the lead up to the attack on the capitol and another investigation into the removal of classified documents to the former president's private beach and golf club. And yes, there's news on that tonight, too.
Sources are telling the New York Times that investigators are seeking additional surveillance footage from Mar-a-Lago as they investigate how classified documents were handled by the former president and his staff.
Now, some footage reportedly showing people moving boxes in and out, and in some cases, appearing to change the container some documents were held in. More on that in just a moment, so standby for that.
That, as a Trump legal team is asking for a special master, a third- party attorney to go through Mar-a-Lago evidence and determine if there are private documents that should be returned. But that's not all. They also want the judge to pause the investigation until the special master's review is done.
And for those of you who've been around for a long time, who didn't just fall off the turn up truck, that's right out of the Trump playbook, delay, delay, delay. File a lawsuit and do motions. And then, you know, that's how it goes.
It's been two weeks since the search and they're only calling for a special master now. Why? The former president's legal team also confirming that he tried to pass a message to the attorney general a few days later, warning people across the country we're not angry about the search. We're angry about, I should say, we're angry about the search, and going on to say, quote, "whatever I can do to take the heat down, to bring down the pressure, to bring the pressure down, just let us know." Which, you know, let's face it. He could have done all of that on his own without sending a message to Merrick Garland.
That as we're just days away from the deadline for the DOJ to explain everything in the search warrant affidavit that they say needs to be kept secret. But the excuse is while they just keep rolling along.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN: What use could a former president have for classified or top-secret information once he's left office? Why, why bring it home with him to Florida.
REP. MIKE TURNER (R-OH): Well, it's, I don't know. I mean, you have to ask him, but certainly we all know that every former president has access to their document. It's how they write their memoirs.
REP. DAN CRENSHAW (R-TX): I still haven't seen any evidence that he was even at that Trump was even asked to give these documents back.
KASH PATEL, FORMER DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE CHIEF OF STAFF: But the Government Services Administration is responsible for packaging and parceling those documents. And you bring up a great point. They were the ones that moved the documents to Mar-a-Lago.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Wait, did he say he hasn't seen any evidence that he was asked for the documents back? What? There was a June search. Well, that was just completely false. That one got past me. Maybe he was writing his memoirs. Right? No, wait. They never even asked him for the documents. No, wait. It was the guys who packed the boxes.
Look, the brouhaha from Trump allies just shows you what a buying the judge and the DOJ are in right now. The more information they put out there, the louder, the calls for more.
Let's bring in now the former FBI deputy director Andrew McCabe, and former Watergate prosecutor, Nick Akerman. Thank you so much.
I just saw that where he says they never, he's never, he didn't see any evidence. He was asked for the documents, Andrew? I mean, January of 2022 after months of discussion Trump's team narrow retreats, 15 boxes, February of 2022, February 18th, of 2022, April and May of 2022, May of 2012, June of 2012. All of these about documents him being. The lawyers saying that there were no more documents. It's returning documents and he didn't see any evidence. That was odd, but anyway, good evening.
ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Good evening.
LEMON: Andrew, I mean, am I off on that?
MCCABE: No, Don, you're absolutely right. I don't know what Mr. Crenshaw is or is not looking at, but there is a mountain of evidence of repeated requests for the documents here. It started, as you mentioned, with the National Archives, they spent seven months requesting the documents back and eventually they got back about a third, apparently of what was there in January.
Then the dust -- the Justice Department enters the scene they convene a grand jury, subpoenas are issued. So, I would count that as requests for documents as well. There's of course the June meeting where the head of the counterintelligence section of the Department of Justice goes to Mar-a-Lago with agents, they see documents, they take some documents with them that day, and they follow it up with letters and an additional subpoena for surveillance video.
So, yes, lots and lots of requests by the government for documents here. And I would add, Don, that really at any point in this process prior to the search warrant had the folks at Mar-a-Lago simply given back everything they had. It is my strong suspicion that the government would've collected their documents and gone away and the whole thing would have, would've essentially gone away.
But it seems to be the indications that there was resistance and possibly folks weren't playing straight with them from Mar-a-Lago in terms of the request that lit a fire under the Justice Department to pursue the search warrant.
LEMON: Yes, odd, meaning that someone would say that. So, Nick, the New York Times re reporting that investigators are seeking additional surveillance footage from Mar-a-Lago including the weeks leading up to the August 8th search. What does it mean that authorities are still scrutinizing how these documents were handled?
NICK AKERMAN, FORMER ASSISTANT SPECIAL WATERGATE PROSECUTOR: Well, I think it's all part of this espionage investigation. They want to know who had access to them, who actually saw these documents, why were documents being taken in and out of this room? Was it coinciding with requests that were made by the Department of Justice?
I mean, I'm sure that all of these documents are also being fingerprinted right now? I mean, the Department of Justice wants to know who handled these documents. It's all part of the bigger investigation in terms of what happened and who had access to these documents.
LEMON: So, you -- there are other -- there are many, I shouldn't say others because we don't know exactly who's a target. I mean, there's been lots of speculation and you know, our legal analyst has said who they believe it is, but do you think that more people could have some sort of exposure for possible aiding and abetting or helping the helping of this potential crime, Nick?
AKERMAN: Absolutely. Because there just -- there were so many people involved there. There were people who brought the documents there, people who had to know they were there. There also certainly were people that basically snitched on Trump. I'm sure some of these people are listed in that affidavit describing what documents are there and what they did to try and keep DOJ away from these documents. LEMON: Andrew McCabe, the Times also reports how Mar-a-Lago had surveillance footage going back 60 days for some areas of the property. And some footage showed that people were moving boxes in and out, and in some cases, appearing to change the containers. Some documents were held in. When you hear how these government documents were being handled, how does that sound to you?
MCCABE: Well, it sounds like there was more activity around the documents and people with access to the documents and people moving documents than what was possibly represented to the Department of Justice at that June meeting. And that likely caused great concern on the -- on the part of the investigators.
You have to remember, Don, this is essentially like any investigation in which you would access video surveillance. So, let's say you had somebody who attacked someone on the street in New York, and it happened right in front of a store that had video surveillance of the sidewalk, you of course would see the action happen.
What we then would do is look at the video surveillance on either side of the store and up the block in each direction and around the corner to find out well, where did that attacker come from? And was he with someone else? Did he have anything else in his hand as he was approaching scene?
So, it's the same thing here. If they have video surveillance from outside the room where the documents were being stored and you have activity coming in and out of that room that you're concerned about, you might want to see where those people who are captured on that surveillance camera went after they left that area. So that's my suspicion of what they may be looking for here.
LEMON: I want to ask you about this other new thing, Nick, that about Donald Trump's legal team asking for a federal judge to appoint a special master to go through the Mar-a-Lago evidence. They also want the judge to pause investigators work related to the evidence until they are -- the review is done. Is there merit to this?
AKERMAN: No, there's no merit to any of this. I mean, if you compare this to what happened with Trump's two former attorneys, Michael Cohen and Rudy Giuliani. Both of those situations search warrants were served on both of those people. Lots of documents, lots of data was taken. And there were both lawyers who had a real privilege.
I mean, they had arguments of privilege over these documents. So, it made sense in those cases to appoint a special master. Here, Trump has no privilege even though his document that he filed today claims they're trying to protect executive privilege that they have to protect conversations between Trump and his, you know, people who worked with him.
None of that makes any sense. He's already been there. He's done it. And he's lost in front of the Supreme Court, eight to one on that issue. There is no executive privilege that belongs to him. It belongs to the executive, the current executive.
And this entire brief, I mean, quite frankly, it looks like it was written by a negligence or a insurance lawyer because they just don't understand the privilege issues here. If Trump really had an issue with attorney client privilege, if he was concerned that something in there was a communication between him and one of his attorneys he would've put in a declaration to that effect. He would've supported that memo with some kind of real evidence, but there is none.
I mean, I just don't see the judge ordering that this investigation stops, or that there be a special master appointed.
LEMON: All right, Nick, Andrew, thank you very much for starting us off tonight. I appreciate it. I'll see you soon.
So, is this all about a legal filing or a P.R. offensive and who is it really aimed at?
LEMON: All right. And we're back now. Trump's legal team calling for a special master to go through document seized from Mar-a-Lago to decide whether any should be returned, claiming in court documents that with Trump currently the 2024 Republican front runner, this is all about politics. And two weeks after FBI agents searched the former president's home. Has all this changed the political landscape?
So, joining me now, senior political correspondent at Puck, Tara Palmeri, CNN's political commentators, Alyssa Farah Griffin and Alice Stewart. Hello?
ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Hi, Don.
TARA PALMERI, SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, PUCK: Good to see you.
LEMON: I can see all of you. OK. Let's see. I'll start with you, Tara.
LEMON: Trump and his allies would love to convince the American people that this investigation is a political hit job. They're filing these new documents in court now two weeks after that search. Is this, you heard what Nick Akerman say that this was, you know, it's not a thing. Do you think this is all about the court of public opinion?
PALMERI: I think so. I think they want to sow seeds of doubt in what the prosecutors are doing. what the Department of Justice is doing. They have to fight back. This is Trump's tactic delay, attack the messengers. Try to suggests that there's some sort of bias. It's a political witch hunt. All these sorts of tactics just delay the inevitable. But a lot of people are saying prosecutors with, you know, bright, legal minds are saying that this probably isn't going to hold up. I did think it was interesting that Ron DeSantis who may end up being
a political rival of Trump's in the 2024 presidential matchup said on Fox News like stop calling it a raid. It was a perfectly legal seizure.
And I think what we're seeing is the GOP, as we get more information about how many documents they were looking for, over 300 as the New York Times reported, what -- how many months they went through trying to get these documents in the long process that actually this may have been a legitimate investigation by the Department of Justice.
LEMON: Well, that -- that's why I was so flummoxed when I heard, gosh, what was his name? The who was on, anyway, who said it was, that they were complying especially and he had seen no evidence that they had tried -- that they had asked for -- Crenshaw. That they had asked for. And then it started in January of '22. And all of this is all, this list that I have here --
PALMERI: Right --
LEMON: -- all the times.
PALMERI: Are all the details of interaction.
LEMON: Yes. Of interaction. So, I, what is he -- what are they talking about?
STEWART: This is more, Tara is exactly right in terms of he is using this as a tactic to flood the zone, dominate the narrative. And also, he's already fundraising off of this request here and he has masterfully, I guess if that's a word for it, been able to really dictate the narrative because he was out there right out of the gate portraying himself as the victim.
But here's the key, is that the truth will come out in the end. And that will be the day that he -- I don't think will anymore be the victim here. One of the things that his attorney said in this request for a special master, she said is that, we're talking to the people and the mood of the people of this country is angry.
Well, I talked with several Republican Congress members and the general notion was, look, you want to talk about the mood of the country? A third of the people are mad. A third of the people are sad, and a third of the people are glad, but 100 percent of the people want more information and we just need to sit back and wait till that comes well.
ALYSSA FARAH GRIFFIN, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: And, and that's the key. What was so bizarre about all this, and frankly, it speaks to Donald Trump staying power within the GOP, unfortunately, is how many elected Republicans came out immediately once this raid took place and said, you know, it's unlawful. We need to defund the FBI. We're criticizing it without having the facts. And by the way, we still don't have the facts. The gang of eight is
requesting to see what in the Senate -- the House and the Senate to see what the doc -- classified documents actually were. But what Donald Trump does master fleet is he wins the P.R. game.
PALMERI: He does.
GRIFFIN: So here we are we're not even talking about, you know, what might be in these documents, but we're kind of lowering the bar to say, well, maybe they're not that classified. Maybe they're not nuclear secrets when an average government official, if they walked out of a government building with a top-secret document, they'd wind up in prison.
LEMON: Well, that --
GRIFFIN: So, we're playing on his turf.
LEMON: Well, that was my point when I got back from vacation last week, people were saying, it's got to be something really bad, and it's got to be this. The fact of the matter is that it was a classified document and it was taken from the White House. It should have gone to the National Archives.
The rules were broken, whether it is, I doubt that obviously Trump did not pack it, pack the boxes himself, but he is still responsible. The buck stops with him. Every other president before him, right, had done, had followed the rules went to the National Archives if they wanted something. Someone went through it to make sure, right, that it was OK.
GRIFFIN: And just, it just very quickly.
LEMON: And that's it.
GRIFFIN: I think that on the classified issue, a lot of times the average person who's not trained in handling state secrets and national security secrets, looking at a document they might not understand why it's sensitive. It may not seem like something significant, but it could be the sources and methods behind it. It could be --
GRIFFIN: -- that it's signals intelligence. And if it shows that marking it means we're going to know we're listening to this adversary. There's a lot of very specific things about why we can't allow these things to be in the public space. And they can't just be sitting at a country in Florida.
STEWART: And a lot of it is, too, is identifying people that are supposed to be confidential in the work that they do.
STEWART: Here's a -- one of the things -- (CROSSTALK)
LEMON: I want to get to this before we're out of time, but go on, go on.
STEWART: Well, he tried to get away with - I unclassified all these documents as they left the White House before they came to me. Well, our colleague, Jamie Gangel has talked to nearly 20 people with knowledge of whether or not that happened. And they said that did not happen.
LEMON: There's no evidence that it happened. And also, there's, as I spoke to a professor who was an expert on this and also a former Bush White House officially who said, this is, that's not a thing. That's not how you declassify documents.
I think this was the most important news that to come out because usually we always say it's the economy stupid. You've heard that. Right?
LEMON: Everyone is worried about pocketbook issues. This is a new NBC poll finds that threats to democracy ranked as the most important issue for voters even above cost of living. It's just one poll. But do you think that that pours cold water on this idea that people don't care about what happened on January 6th, that they don't care about the efforts to, you know, to undermine our democracy. It really, I think shows that people, this is a huge concern.
PALMERI: I think that actually the January 6th committee and the hearings have really elevated the story about defending democracy and maybe it wasn't top of mind for people, but after seeing those hearings after, you know, hearing the stories of people about how there were real attempts to try to take over the government or not hand over the power, I think it sort of made people think for a second, wow, this wasn't just a few angry tweets. This was a coordinated effort.
And I think, if anything, all that means to me is that actually the January 6th hearings are working.
GRIFFIN: Yes, they're breaking through and you can't avoid the threats to democracy --
LEMON: Do you think it's breaking through?
GRIFFIN: I think it is breaking through. I will say I still think kitchen table issues are going to be more significant than this poll shows, but at the end of the day, 60 percent of Republicans believe the election was stolen. Every American going around having conversations with their friends is having conversations about was the election legitimate and that's not something normal. That's not something we did at previously. STEWART: And also --
LEMON: Let me put this up, Alice, because I want you to respond to it. Trump and his allies have been blasting the investigators, right? As you know, right? Investigate the investigators. That same poll finds that 57 percent of voters say investigations into Trump should continue. In a country this polarized that is a surprisingly clear mandate.
STEWART: Well, I'm going to be the numbers geek here. And if you look at that 57 and you look at the cross tabs, the breakdown of that, look, we've all known this has been a Rorschach test. Republicans who support him are fully in sync with him on thinking and think that this is wrong. Democrats think that this is the right way to go.
Of that 57 percent, if you look at the party ideology, nearly 90 percent of Democrats say that this investigation should continue, about 20 percent of Republicans. But the key, moving forward to 2024, 61 percent of independents --
LEMON: Independents. There you go.
STEWART: -- support this moving forward.
That's the number that should be extremely disturbing because those are the people that are wanting to see where is this going to go? And many of them want to see this continue.
LEMON: And that's some stuff I want to talk to you about something that I learned over the weekend about. And someone was watching our conversation last week about, whether he's going to run or not.
STEWART: I don't think --
LEMON: That and more.
STEWART: I don't think --
LEMON: Everyone stick around.
PALMERI: What a teaser --
LEMON: Mitch McConnell made -- about the midterms. We're going to tell you what he says. And then, what I want to hear from all of you right after this. We'll be right back.
LEMON: So, the political landscape keeps shifting ahead of the November midterms. Mitch McConnell saying this today about the party's chances to retake the Senate.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY), SENATE MINORITY LEADER: The Senate races are statewide. They're just different in nature from individual congressional district, 20 of my members up and only 14 of the Democrats. So that's to their advantage.
Many of these states are purple states. It could go either way. I think it's just going to be a really close race.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: OK. So, back with me, Tara, Alyssa and Alice. OK. Alice, last week, Mitch McConnell was talking about candidate quality and there's polling that shows showing that Masters, Walker, Oz, and Johnson are all in -- are all in the red on favorability. I was like, wait a minute, they're red candidates, whatever.
This is up, up in the air now. I mean, should Republican they -- this should be a good year for Republicans and it should have been what happened with this.
STEWART: Donald Trump happened. And all of those people you just showed were backed by Donald Trump, supported Donald Trump. Some of them are election deniers. That is not sitting well with us.
LEMON: You say Trump, but did the GOP put themselves in this position by going all in with him? Not everyone.
STEWART: Well, he is, look, he is, you know, like it or not, he is the titular head of the Republican Party. He is the one that can galvanize voters for the base in a primary. He can raise money for primaries. The problem is that doesn't always translate well in a general election.
And I wish that would've been thought about more on the front end, but what's harming these people that you put up, they were backed by Trump. Many of them are supporters of the election denials. We have Herschel Walker has some personal issues. We have Oz with some residency issues. So, so these are things that they're going to have to answer to.
And again, I go back to when you're the party and you're looking at who's the best candidate, it can't just get through the primary line. It has to get all the way through the general.
LEMON: Well, you have said this, when we were up late covering waiting for the returns to come, and you said the same thing. This is about qualified candidates and in many and, you know, if they want to hold the Senate, right. And even the Congress, many of these candidates are just not qualified. They're not good candidates.
And this is why we saw the Democrats contributing money to some of these candidates because they knew they were the weaker candidates and they wanted them to be the nominee for the GOP because they knew that they would be easier to beat and the polling reflects that.
LEMON: On his -- on his social media platform, Alyssa, Trump is calling Mitch McConnell a broken-down hack for his comments about the endorse, you know, Trump's endorsed Senate candidates. I mean, they have gone through this before, they've gone back and forth, but what happens if these candidates lose?
GRIFFIN: Well, listen, McConnell is absolutely right that candidates matter. And these are not a strong roster of candidates. All of who you mentioned with the exception of Ron Johnson are first time office holders running statewide.
I also know J.D. Vance in very red Ohio is doing significantly worse than he should be to Tim Ryan, a popular moderate Democrat. Listen, you can't, to Alice's point, just nominate people based on how much they appeal to the base. You have to think about how they're going to fare in a general election.
So, mark my words and it's already beginning, is most of these candidates who have previously criticized Mitch McConnell inside of with Donald Trump now want the Senate leadership fund McConnell's political arm to come in and bail them out as they're lagging in the polls.
So, McConnell is going to come out fine with this. There's going to be no ditching Mitch. This is just going to be kind of like the language of Trump attacking him and he'll take credit when they win. When in reality it's McConnell's political.
LEMON: OK. So, but what if they don't win? Does he --
PALMERI: That's another question.
LEMON: -- could he escaped blame for not, you know, regaining the chamber?
PALMERI: Well, that's a good question because who will everyone -- who will they blame? Will they blame Donald Trump who basically chose these primary candidates who all vowed that they would not vote for Mitch for leadership, Mitch McConnell for leadership, or are they going to blame, you know, the national Republican editorial committee for not doing good enough candidate recruitment.
These people were all first timers, like you said, they were untested, unvetted backed by Trump. And McConnell couldn't say anything because in fact, if you are hated by McConnell, that helps you in a GOP primary. And they all came out and said, we don't care about Mitch McConnell. We're not going to vote for him. We'll see what happens when they actually get into the Senate and then they going to have to answer to the constituents.
GRIFFIN: Well, and Trump lost Georgia for Republicans and the Senate runoff and never got the blame for that.
GRIFFIN: He managed to point blame at everyone for it. So, he tends to be kind of Teflon in these things, right?
LEMON: I want to ask you, Tara, let me ask you that this is, this NBC poll, another NBC poll finding that Democrats have closed the enthusiasm gap heading into the midterms. That's another problem for Republicans in these statewide races.
LEMON: Was that, did that change when it came to Roe V. Wade is that --
LEMON: Is that what --
PALMERI: It's the Dobbs decision that I believe has changed that. I think from my experience talking to Republican strategists, I'm sure you noticed as well, who are working on major campaigns right now, some of which are up in the Senate races. They don't know how to deal with the abortion issue, right? They just don't.
GRIFFIN: Well, it's so much different when you talk about it is the hypothetical of your pro-life, but Roe V. Wade is, you know, rose the law of the land. And now this is a completely different ballpark. I've heard the same thing from Republicans earlier.
LEMON: Let me ask you, I'm going to get this in. This Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporting on Sunday, Herschel Walker said this about the new climate exchange legislation. And I quote here, it says, "they continue to try to fool you, that they are helping you out, but they're not because a lot of money is going two trees. Don't we have enough trees around here?"
STEWART: Well, let me just say this. I'm a Georgia Bulldog. I love Herschel Walker. I will give him the benefit of the doubt. He was specifically referring to the $1.5 billion urban forestry provision of this act. And he reiterated that on Twitter said, yes, I said what I said, 1.5 billion for trees and it's coming out of the pockets of taxpayers.
So, it's not, that wasn't his solution to climate change. He was talking about --
GRIFFIN; Honestly, it wasn't his biggest gaff, like that, I'm kind of with you in that. LEMON: It's one in a series of, you know, I got to ask. So, we tease this. So, what I'm hearing from sources, and again, this is what I'm hearing from my people is that he wasn't going to run. And then you can tell me if you think this and then Mar-a-Lago changed all of it. The --
GRIFFIN: I'm bullish he was always going to run so long as the legal walls kept closing in. And I think Margo was the most significant thing that could have happened to make him just become indignant in water runs. He runs as my prediction.
STEWART: And look at the voters. The voters were at the point where they were ready for him not to run.
STEWART: Republican voters were ready to put him in the rearview mirror and then Mar-a-Lago happened and the base jumped back on board with.
LEMON: Final word.
PALMERI: I have heard, final word, woo. I have heard actually that Trump feels more confident now than ever that he could clear the Republican field. And that's another reason why he wants to run because he doesn't think he has a challenger when you saw the entire party two weeks ago, standing behind him saying this is the biggest political witch hunt of all time, finally speaking his language and his course. And he thinks that he'll have the -- he'll have the nomination.
GRIFFIN: But I would note Ron DeSantis is on air in Ohio with just a, I'm doing a great job ad.
PALMERI: Yes. He might not --
LEMON: This is my prediction. We shall see. Thank you.
PALMERI: Thank you.
LEMON: Officers removed from duty after a violent arrest is caught on camera. And we'll talk about that next.
LEMON: OK. So, this video is disturbing, it's disturbing video and it led to three Arkansas police officers being removed from duty, all three facing state and federal investigations after at least two of them were caught on camera punching and kneeing a suspect during an arrest this weekend.
At one point, the video shows that one of the officers appearing to lift the suspect's head and then slam it into the pavement. So, before we play, there's a reminder that this video is graphic and it's hard to watch. here it is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNKNOWN: This is bad.
UNKNOWN: We got to get out of here.
UNKNOWN: Don't beat him. He needs his medicine.
UNKNOWN: Back the (muted) up.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: OK. So, let's bring in now CNN law enforcement analyst, Michael Fanone. Hey, Mike, how are you?
MICHAEL FANONE, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Good. How are you doing, Don?
LEMON: I'm OK. That video is disturbing to watch, but let's talk about, you know, what's procedure, what's OK, what's not. Official say the suspect allegedly threatened a gas station clerk in the neighboring town. They say he was initially cooperative, but then he tried to attack officers.
Any of what you saw in that video justified at all based on the information that we have so far and your years as an officer.
FANONE: No. And the short answer is absolutely not. I mean, I think it's important that we allow the investigation to play out before we start condemning police officers, however, based on the, you know, video and then the charges that have been brought. I can't see any way that you could justify those sorts of actions.
LEMON: Even with his level of, I think you're right, because the investigation should play out, but it's certainly disturbing to look at that video, even with his level of, quote, unquote, "not complying." And I -- I'm not there. I just saw what was on the video. You still don't think that that was justified.
LEMON: Noncompliance probably is a better grammar.
FANONE: Correct. So, use force policy varies from department to department. There is no universal standard in the United States, although I believe there should be. But it's all predicated on the idea that a law enforcement officer can use the minimal amount of force necessary to affect compliance. And that is based off of the suspect, or in this case, the defendant's actions.
However, that's not like a cart blotch check to or blank check to continue to use force each time an officer uses force, whatever that force may be, whether it's physical, whether it's verbal, they have to reassess and decide whether there's an escalation needed in their force or whether they need to deescalate the force based off of the suspect's actions.
But what you saw there looked more like a ballroom brawl than it did an officer using, you know, very specific --
FANONE: -- very -- correct.
LEMON: Yes. So, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson just spoke out on CNN. Listen to this, Mike.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. ASA HUTCHINSON (R-AR): It still concerns me that a law enforcement officer with proper training has to be able to control the circumstances. And that was not something that whenever I talked to our training officials, that's not consistent with that. That was, in my judgment excessive, but let's wait for the judge -- for the investigation to be completed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Listen, he is saying similar to what you're saying that let's wait for the investigation to be completed, but the officers have been removed from duty for now. What consequences should they face for not following their training?
FANONE: Well, I mean, if they did violate departmental protocols, I mean, there's a discipline system. I would assume that's in place to address that. And if the state or federal authorities decide that their actions were criminal in nature, that they exceeded the scope of what is appropriate by a law enforcement officer, then, you know, they should be charged criminally.
The one thing that the governor said that I did take issue with. And I've talked about before is when he said that the, you know, this was outside the scope of normal based on the training protocols that are put in place.
I was a cop for 20 years. And I'll tell you right now that training that's provided to officers when it comes to use of force is grossly inadequate. When I trained, if you want to call it that, I've referred to it previously as familiarization. Use of force training took place bi-annually as far as qualifying with a pistol.
When it came to tactics, that took place every other year and we spent about four hours on the type of, you know, physical tactics that would be applied in this type of situation, which to me is, I mean, nothing short of grossly inadequate. So, in a lot of ways, I feel like we're shedding these officers up for failure.
LEMON: I think that's a good point. I mean, it seems like you're criticizing it, but you're actually trying to help the officers so that they don't end up in situations like this so that the people they serve don't end up in situations like this.
LEMON: Yes. So, there is a moment. Let's talk more about that video. There's a moment in the video, Mike, where it seems that one officer points in the direction of a woman who is taking the video, the clip in shortly after. So, we don't know just how aggressive they are in the moments after, but there were clearly witnesses there though.
One calling to get the man medicine. Should that have changed the officer's behavior?
FANONE: I mean, one would think that when they realized they were being recorded, that they would rethink their tactics. But you know, again, having been caught up in situations like this myself in the heat of the moment, you know, you just continue to go about your business almost as if, as if you were not being recorded.
LEMON: Yes. Michael Fanone, thank you, sir. Always appreciate your perspective.
FANONE: Thanks, Don.
LEMON: So, he says he is not retiring, but he is moving on. What's up with Dr. Anthony Fauci? That's next.
LEMON: Big news today from Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert. He is leaving government service after nearly four decades. And even though he's 81 years old, he says he is not retiring. Saying in a statement and I quote, "I am announcing today that I will be stepping down from the positions of director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease and the chief of the NIAID laboratory of immune -- immunoregulation, as well as a position of chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden. I will be leaving these positions in December of this year to pursue the next chapter of my career."
President Biden also releasing a statement, saying because of Dr. Fauci's many contributions to public health lives here in the United States and around the world have been saved. And he leaves his position in the U.S. government -- as he leaves his position in the U.S. government, I know the American people and the entire world will continue to benefit from Dr. Fauci's expertise in whatever he does next.
But not everyone is praising Dr. Fauci. House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy heavily criticizing him today. Accusing Fauci of losing the trust of Americans during the COVID pandemic and of keeping schools and businesses closed for too long. Republicans vowing to investigate him if they retake Congress. Up next, Trump's legal team filing a new lawsuit today over the FBI's search of Mar-a-Lago. Stay with us.
LEMON: New details coming in tonight about the investigation into the former president's handling of classified documents. Sources tell the New York Times investigators want more surveillance footage from Mar- a-Lago. It comes as the former president takes his first formal legal action after FBI agents searched his home.
And to CNN exclusive on another front. Sources tell CNN that the Justice Department is issuing a new grand jury subpoena to the National Archives for more documents as part of the January 6th investigation.
Let's discuss now, CNN's senior justice correspondent Evan Perez is here, and the former federal prosecutor, Kim Wehle joins us as well. She's the author of "How to Think Like a Lawyer." And the former chief of counter espionage, Peter Strzok, the author of "Compromised: Counterintelligence and the threat of Donald J. Trump."
Good evening. Happy to have you all on. Thanks for joining.
Evan, we're getting these new details tonight about investigators looking for more material at Mar-a-Lago. What do you know?
EVAN PEREZ, CNN SENIOR JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Don, this is reporting from the New York Times. And if you remember, the prosecutors there that investigators had asked for and received surveillance footage from Mar-a-Lago, it appears that they want some more.
And according to the Times, there was a period for about going back to 60 days that investigators had reviewed and they saw some things on there that raised some concern.
And of course, this is something that would explain perhaps why, you know, after that June meeting, where they came away with classified documents, they, you know, somehow decided that there was more information there and that they were concerned about, and that, that led to this extraordinary move by the FBI, by the Justice Department to conduct a search of the former president's home in Mar-a-Lago.
LEMON: Peter Strzok, the New York Times is reporting some surveillance footage from Mar-a-Lago showed people moving boxes in and out and appearing to change the containers some documents were held in.
What's your read on this situation? How will investigators get to the bottom of this?
PETER STRZOK, FORMER FBI AGENT: Well, they've got a lot of work ahead of them.