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Erin Burnett Outfront
GOP Blocks Capitol Riot Panel; Only 6 Voted in Favor of Bill; 6 Republicans Break with Party, Vote in Favor of Jan. 6 Commission as the Rest of GOP Give into Trump, 2022 Fears; Rep. Ro Khanna (D-CA) is Interviewed About the San Jose Shooting; NYT: Feds Probe Whether Ukrainians Meddled in 2020 Election; Biden Touts Pandemic Progress: 51 Percent of Adults Fully Vaccinated. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired May 28, 2021 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: I'm Wolf Blitzer in THE SITUATION ROOM. You can always follow me on Twitter. You can follow me on Instagram @WOLFBLITZER. Please tweet the show @CNNSITROOM. Have a safe Memorial Day weekend.
Erin Burnett OUTFRONT starts right now.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, Republicans blocked a bipartisan commission into the Capitol riot, Democrats accused them of trying to suppress the truth, so what now?
Plus, a CNN exclusive, the mother and the partner of fallen Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick speak to CNN. Their reaction to the vote and what they told Republican lawmakers behind closed doors.
And 22,000 rounds of ammunition, officials just now revealing what all they found inside the home of the San Jose gunman who killed nine of his coworkers. Let's go OUTFRONT.
Good evening, everyone. I'm Kate Bolduan in for Erin Burnett.
OUTFRONT tonight, self-preservation over the truth. These Republican senators voting to block a bipartisan commission to investigate the deadly insurrection on the Capitol choosing Trump and their political futures over getting to the bottom of what happened January 6th and to make sure it doesn't happen again.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): This vote has made it official. Donald Trump's big lie has now fully enveloped the Republican Party, shame on the Republican Party for trying to sweep the horrors of that day under the rug because they're afraid of Donald Trump.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Only six Republicans sided with Democrats in support of that and while the vote was expected to fail, it's still striking that it happened. Many of the same people voting no today are the very same Republicans who were calling for a bipartisan investigation in the days after the deadly riot. Now, they've turned their back on it. And one Republican, Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski is calling them out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. LISA MURKOWSKI (R-AK): To be making a decision for the short-term political gain at the expense of understanding and acknowledging what was in front of us, on January 6. I think we need to look at that critically. Is that really what this is about, is everything is just one election cycle after another?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Apparently, yes. Leaving Lisa Murkowski and the five other Republicans who voted for the commission out on an island push there by the fringe. People like Matt Gaetz and Marjorie Taylor Greene who again last night swore their allegiance to one man, Donald Trump, over anything else.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MATT GAETZ (D-FL): This is Donald Trump's party and I'm a Donald Trump Republican. Our elections must have integrity and we need your help to fix the problem right here in the State of Georgia.
REP. MARJORIE TAYLOR GREENE (R-GA): Who won the presidential race on November 3rd for Georgia?
CROWD: Trump, Trump, Trump, Trump.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: You shouldn't have to say this nearly seven months after the election, but Donald Trump did not win Georgia. But these lies are consuming more and more Republican voters. According to a study by the Public Religion Research Institute, 23 percent of Republicans believe that conspiracy theories pushed by QAnon. That is nearly a quarter of Republicans who believe in a movement that is based on the idea that a network of satanic, cannibalistic, pedophiles are operating a global child sex trafficking network and are working against Donald Trump within the highest levels of government. Supporters of this are a growing part of the Republican Party as our Donie O'Sullivan found out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A lot of people in, well, Washington, D.C. ...
DONIE O'SULLIVAN, CNN REPORTER: What's your name, ma'am?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: ... who are in horrible child trafficking, sex trafficking ...
O'SULLIVAN: What were your thoughts on the violent insurrection incited by Trump at the Capitol?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, my god, that's all such a lie.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I do believe that the election was stolen, and I do believe that it was a peaceful rally that day.
O'SULLIVAN: You guys both genuinely believe the election was stolen.
RITA WARD, ATTENDEE: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: The election was not stolen and there was a violent and deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol and yet Republicans shut down the chance to form a bipartisan commission that would address the growing danger from within their party. Manu Raju is OUTFRONT for us live on Capitol Hill tonight.
Manu, what's the next move for Democrats and those few Republicans who still want to see an investigation go forward?
MANU RAJU, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kate, I'm told tonight that House Democrats are actively considering taking action on their own, moving to create a select committee in the House that would be led by Democrats, which Democrats can make decisions on issuing subpoenas, scheduling hearings and drive the investigation on their own. Republicans will sit on the committee, but they would be in the minority in the House.
To do that, Nancy Pelosi, the House Speaker needs to get a vote from a majority of the house and with the Democrats in charge of that chamber that will be almost assured that Nancy Pelosi has not said explicitly that's what she wants to do. But she has been clear for days that that is an option she will consider it and talking today with a number of House Democrats, senior Democrats, people who are influential, people who are close to the Speaker, they believe she will do that, and the push is there.
And also, some Republicans warned, frankly, their colleagues not to block an outside commission because the commission would have been split between five appointees of Republicans, five appointees from Democrats who would be bipartisan. They could issue subpoenas on a bipartisan basis. They said don't do that, because instead Democrats will do this on their own. That was the warning from Bill Cassidy, one of the six Republican senators who voted to create the move ahead with that commission today, but Republicans ignored that in the senate side. They said that any outside commission in their view could be detrimental to their efforts to take back the House and the Senate.
In next year's midterms, they believe, a select committee in the House, they can paint as a partisan endeavor trying to go after the chances, Republican chances of taking back Congress never mind the fact that it was them, the Republicans, who scuttle that bipartisan effort just today here, Kate. BOLDUAN: Yes. One election after another, that's what it is. Thanks,
OUTFRONT now John Avlon, CNN Senior Political Analyst and Bill Kristol, the Editor-at-Large of the Bulwark. If that's where I'm starting with getting tongue tied then we're in trouble tonight, guys.
Bill, you did hear Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski say that this vote by the majority of Republicans was about short-term political gain. Do you think that's what this is all about?
BILL KRISTOL, EDITOR AT LARGE, THE BULWARK: Yes. No, I think they were scared what the commission would find in a high-profile hearings with subpoena power and all of that. And I do think just a little more specific about what they were scared about the commission finding, I don't know that people think there's that much more we're going to learn about what happened on the Capitol grounds. We're going to have a bunch of trials on that, too, and so that part will come out anyway.
Here's the place we would learn about from a commission with subpoena power, what happened in the White House? What did Donald Trump do when he got phone calls or when phone calls were placed to him or to his chief of staff by Mike Pence, by Kevin McCarthy, by others, did he just watch TV and relish the situation for two or three hours? Did he talk to the Defense Department? Did he talk to DHS?
I think the people testifying under oath as to what Trump knew when he knew it, what he did, what he didn't do, the purposeful dereliction of duty by Donald Trump, that's what they're scared to have come out in detail. That will be somewhat new. They've been pretty close now to people who were in the White House that day, the staff. They couldn't be so close when asked if they're subpoenaed to testify and that would maybe damage Trump who, of course, is going to be campaigning for all of these Republicans in 2022. As right now the leading presidential candidate, the leading candidate to be the presidential nominee in 2024 and Republican senators and members of the House too who mostly voted against the commission, of course, they are scared of what we would learn about what Trump did that day.
BOLDUAN: And take it just another step, John, I mean, the way former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel put it last night. He said, I don't understand why they are afraid of the truth. But as Bill is getting at, are they afraid of what they could find out the truth about what Donald Trump's role was or are they afraid of the fallout that they get if they voted for this from Donald Trump?
JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Both. Both. They're afraid of Trump's bullies who back the big lie, who form up the base of their party and it's caused them to try to cover up and reject a bipartisan, independent commission to investigate an attack on our Capitol. They are so preoccupied with hating Democrats that that's overwhelmed their love for our democracy and that's really what's at stake here.
Don't kid yourself. This is a vote that will live in infamy. Credit to those six Republicans who did the right thing and cross the aisle. But the fact that folks who knew what happened, who saw what happened would still vote to shut this down is a cynical cover up for sedition the likes we have not seen in this country, and it cannot be forgotten, but we also need to find a way to get the truth out and to confront the big lie because nothing less than our democracy is at stake here.
BOLDUAN: I'm still stuck on the fact that they think that if they voted against this it somehow might go away. It's not going to, regardless, like it's not going to go away. It's going to follow them to the 2022 election and that's just the fact - I mean, that is reality. We can all see that happening.
But Bill, let me ask about this, Marjorie Taylor Greene is one of the loudest members of Congress that is pushing Trump's message constantly.
And as you know, she has also pushed the conspiracy theories of QAnon. This new report showing 23 percent of Republicans agree with the beliefs of QAnon and for anyone not familiar, I want to read for you what the people who were polled said that they agreed with. OK. This was part of the polling question. Here it is.
"The government, media and financial worlds in the U.S. are controlled by a group of Satan-worshipping pedophiles who run a global child sex trafficking operation. There is a storm coming soon that will sweep away the elites in power and restore the rightful leaders. And because things have gotten so far off track, true American patriots may have to resort to violence in order to save our country."
These are the beliefs that this 23 percent agree with. How in the world can any one person agree with that, let alone 23 percent of Republicans?
KRISTOL: I mean, there are many reasons for it but one is the kind of echo chamber of right-wing media and beyond right-wing media and conspiracy theories on social media and people not standing up to say no, no, this is false. I mean, if you are a Republican voted for your Republican Governor and you fall into this trap, some of them will just fall in but others have their own governor, Ron DeSantis or Brian Kemp or someone they voted for says, wait a second, this is terrible. This is really dangerous. You cannot believe these crazy conspiracy theories. Maybe a few of them would snap out.
How many Republicans are saying that? How many Republicans got up this morning, Republican-elected officials, senators, congressmen, governors got up this morning read about that poll and thought, geez, I've got to tell some of my people out there, my voters that this stuff is crazy and dangerous. I didn't hear a lot of people saying that today.
BOLDUAN: You've written a book kind of on not QAnon but on, basically, the whole concept of how we got where we are in wingnuts, John, I mean, what do you think of this?
AVLON: This has been brewing for a long time. But this poll really crystallizes the fact that a cult like conspiracy theory has captured the extreme wing of the Republican Party. That because of polarization, hyper partisanship has disproportionate influence over the primaries and so that's how they can cow U.S. senators are no better and the politicians will then do their bidding in effect. They will punish people who tell the truth about the big lie and they will refuse to condemn people who parrot conspiracy theories.
Now of all sorts ornate rationalizations why, but how did we get to this point? It is as Bill said in part because we have this ecosystem of extreme media that keeps people agitated and extreme. And that has had politics take the place of faith in some cases in people's religion. So you have them buying into this belief system that is rooted ultimately in demonizing their fellow citizens to feel a sense of identity themselves. That led to the poll, it led to the attack in the Capitol and unless it is confronted, it will lead to more violence in our politics.
Though our democracy, our ability to reason together, our ability to find good faith in negotiation is one of the things that was a casualty not only on January 6th but in today's vote and it's an expression of the disproportion of power of this insanity, these extremes that are corrupting our politics, all of it.
BOLDUAN: John Avlon, Bill Kristol, thank you.
OUTFRONT next, a CNN exclusive interview with the mother and the partner of fallen Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick. What they told one senator who continues to downplay the riot.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANDRA GARZA, PARTNER OF OFFICER BRIAN SICKNICK: I said to him that he got lucky. He got lucky. It could have been very different that day.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Plus, new images tonight of the massive amount of ammunition found inside the home of the man who killed nine of his co-workers.
And a new investigation linked to Rudy Giuliani, this time reportedly into whether the president's attorney was being used by Ukraine to meddle in the 2020 election.
BOLDUAN: Tonight, all talk and no action. That is how the partner of late Capitol Hill Police Officer Brian Sicknick describes the Republican senators who today opposed a January 6th commission. An independent investigation into the attack that Officer Sicknick faced the day before he died. Sicknick's mother made a last-minute trip to the Hill ahead of the vote to plead with Republicans to change their minds. That clearly did not work. Here's more of Jake Tapper's exclusive interview.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: The people that said that they were going to vote against the commission, did they give a reason for it?
GARZA: A lot of them would default to the - well, it's very partisan. Well, that's baloney, because Sen. Collins put an amendment in there to make it very bipartisan, so I don't know what they were thinking.
TAPPER: You think they were just looking for an excuse?
GARZA: I do. Yes, I do. And I think, they just don't want to do the right thing. Again, I think they are very - I think what you're seeing is elitism at its finest. They're very protected. They think that, oh, nothing is ever going to happen to me. I've got law enforcement here. They live in their gated communities, their very safe neighborhoods.
So they live in this magical thought process that nothing is ever going to happen to me. That happens to other people. I think they need to get out of that thought process. Because like I said yesterday, FBI Director Wray said at the hearings on January 6th, domestic terrorism is a real threat.
GARZA: I think January 6 was enough for them to open their eyes and say, well, we better get serious. And again, if not for them, if for the other innocence that were there that day, law enforcement and their constituents, again, if they're dead, they can't do their job. And I hate to be that blunt about it and again I know yesterday, I made some of them very uncomfortable. But I'm going to be real about it.
TAPPER: Well, one of the Republicans who met with was Sen. Ron Johnson from Wisconsin, a Republican. He has repeatedly downplayed what happened and he has said that he didn't fear for his life. He would have if it has been Black Lives Matter protesters. He's called it peaceful protests.
TAPPER: What did what did you have to say to him?
GARZA: I said to him that he got lucky. He got lucky. It could have been very different that day. I said to a lot of them that were resistant, I said have those two pipe bombs detonated, that would have been a completely different story.
Resources, law enforcement sources would have been diverted and who knows what would have happened. So those who want to run with this narrative that, well, it was a tourist day and I didn't feel threatened. Yes, I mean, they got lucky. That's the truth of it.
TAPPER: Gladys, you're not a political person. You're not a political activist. This is your first real intense submersion in this world. What do you think of it, the good and the bad?
GLADYS SICKNICK, MOTHER OF OFFICER BRIAN SICKNICK: Well, I said this morning, I said I can't believe that I have a child that's going to be in the history books for all the wrong reasons. Because he was such a good person, and he was so good at his job. You know what, he was texting all his buddies to see if they were OK on that day, while he was fighting for four hours, four plus hours without any help.
TAPPER: You were introduced to some of Brian's colleagues, Capitol police officers yesterday, friends of his, tell us about that.
SICKNICK: They're just wonderful people and it's a family. They consider themselves family. And they really have each other's backs. They were devastated, absolutely devastated. I mean, all these other people that are saying that it was no big deal, they went home that night to have dinner with their families. And did they watch television and see what happened and they didn't feel anything? It's amazing to me. And all the cops that were hurt, I mean, there are a whole bunch of them that were hurt quite badly.
SICKNICK: I think people don't realize how badly some of them were hurt.
TAPPER: And Brian didn't get to go home.
GARZA: No, he didn't. He didn't. It's very disturbing to know that his last moments on earth were dealing with that day. And I think what a lot of the general public aren't aware of is that the sliver of video footage that was released to the public only show a very small part of the story.
Officer Edwards, the female officer that was standing next to him prior to that incident that was caught on camera, she actually was assaulted brutally and was slammed into the ground head first into the concrete and suffered a severe concussion, but yet went back out again as did Brian. He had been in another area of the Capitol grounds and had been fighting vigorously and had been moved to that area with Officer Edwards and had just been caught on camera at that moment.
So I mean, this is the thing that the officers had been through that day. I mean, some of them had been severely hurt and just got back up and dusted themselves off and went back out again.
TAPPER: And I know that Brian was sprayed with a chemical spray during the insurrection. He collapsed after returning to his division office. What is your understanding about how he died? What the cause of death was?
GARZA: So I'll say this, I accept the medical examiner's report conclusion of his death. And I understand it just as everyone else does. I don't want to get into the details of it.
TAPPER: Right. No, we don't have to do that.
GARZA: But I accept the science and what they have said. And until something else comes out, I can only go by what I know right now. That could change, I don't know. But I will say that stress does a terrible thing to the body. Who knows what would have happened had he not encountered what he did that day?
TAPPER: Yes. And I'm sure you feel the same way. If that had not happened, do you think he still would have been alive if there ...
TAPPER: ... if there had not been an insurrection?
SICKNICK: Absolutely. He is very, very healthy. He was just writing that he was on the bicycle division. It's a very hard job. People don't realize how hard it is and he was in very good shape.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: You can see much more of Jake's exclusive interview, it's on cnn.com.
OUTFRONT next, we have new images and disturbing new details 12 guns and 22,000 rounds of ammunition found in the home of the San Jose shooter as we learn key information was never shared with police.
Plus, new developments in the federal investigation of Rudy Giuliani, prosecutors get the OK for a special master to review what was seized during the rate of Giuliani's home and office.
BOLDUAN: A breaking news, and tonight investigators finding 22,000 rounds of ammunition and a dozen guns at the home of the man who killed nine of his co-workers at a San Jose rail yard this week. Officials say that the gunman was a highly disgruntled employee for many years who appeared to be specifically targeting his victims. Josh Campbell is OUTFRONT for us live from San Jose tonight. Josh, what else are you learning?
JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Kate, with this disturbing news, we're learning about this arsenal that the suspect had at his home, now we know here at the scene of the rail yard where the shooting happened the suspect used three hand guns but as authorities went through his property, they found a dozen firearms, they found 22,000 rounds of ammunition as well as Molotov cocktails, again an arsenal there.
We're also learning from authorities why a fire broke out at his house around the same time of the shooting. Authorities saying that what he did is actually on his stove. He had ammunition that was surrounded by some kind of accelerant and he turned on the stove before he left his house to come here and conduct that massacre, that causing that fire to erupt at his home.
Now, there are a number of theories right now about what the purpose of that was, one being that was possibly meant to draw law enforcement to that location if you had a bellowing smoke and flames, accelerant, ammunition, that would cause law enforcement from neighboring jurisdictions to go there, perhaps bringing them away from this area.
S, just a disturbing news there. Of course, this community demanding answers. We know that in 2016, the suspect had that encounter with custom officials when they found that disturbing rioting about hatred towards employer.
The district attorney here telling "USA Today" that they would have liked to have known that. They didn't have that information. So disturbing news there.
Finally, as far as the work of investigators, it continues. I will show you some images we just saw here a short time ago. Federal agents lined up walking through the scene very methodically looking for evidence, we are told that the FBI has over 50 people here, the ATF is on the scene, as well as other law enforcement officers trying to scour this scene, scour the residence, to get any evidence that they can to try to get to that motive about why this massacre happened -- Kate.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN HOST: Josh, thank you so much. Great reporting.
OUTFRONT with me now is Democratic Congressman Ro Khanna of California. He represents the area where the shooting took place.
Congressman, I want to show everyone just once again these pictures that had been coming in from the sheriff's department. I mean, just more than 20,000 rounds of ammunition, a dozen guns and more found at this guy's house. What do you say to that?
REP. RO KHANNA (D-CA): Kate, the people I have talked to in the community, there is not just irk, there is anger. This was senseless, and what people want to know how did this person have so many guns? Why is it that he was not arrested when there was issue with the Customs where he basically talked about his hatred for VTA and his plans to do violence? Why was there not action taken when there have been accusations of domestic violence?
There are a lot of unanswered questions. And people are angry. They're outraged. And, you know, when we -- when I was at the family center and you see the grieving families and the lost of life, it is -- it is just outrageous. BOLDUAN: Yeah, and you mentioned what happened at the -- you know, when Customs stopped him. It was 2016. Customs stopped him when he was traveling back from the Philippines. And in this position, they found a book on terrorism, on fear and manifestos, and also a notebook filled with notes of hatred towards his workplace.
But again as Josh Campbell was reporting and you'd noted, it didn't go any further than that. The D.A., Josh says, would have liked to have known that. Look, I would never want to say after something as horrible as this, you know, to talk about if it could have been prevented. But does it concern you when you have warning signs like that that are not conveyed to police.
KHANNA: It does, Kate. And Jeff Rosen (ph) was the D.A. I've spoke with him, and there is concerned about we weren't notified. And this is not pointing a finger of blame. It's just saying that we have to have better system of communications.
Look, I know and I respect that we have a strong First Amendment of this. But under Brandenburg, the First Amendment does not protect speech that is inciting violence or may lead to imminent violence.
And I really think we have to think in this country if you have a case like that, where someone is engaged in that kind of hatred, those kind of threats of terrorism, that there ought to be consequences and they -- you can't just let them go free and then hope for the best.
BOLDUAN: Nine families irreparably harmed, shattered. Nine people dead.
The brother of one of the victims, his name -- he's 30 -- he was 36- years-old. His name -- there is his picture right there. His name is Taptejdeep Singh.
His brother told CNN that his brother died trying to protect others there that day. Listen to what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARMAN GILL, BROTHER OF SHOOTING VICTIM TAPTEJDEEP SINGH: As I'm told by his co-workers, he was telling them to go hide and died fighting. He was a fighter.
That's little comforting to know. That's what he was exactly doing, his last moments of his life as well. And he helped save some lives and those families can sleep in peace knowing their loved ones are with them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Just -- Congressman, your reaction to hearing that?
KHANNA: He's a hero. You know, he's really a hero.
And, honestly, as an Indian American, I'm so proud of his whole family and of his -- of the devotion he showed and it's just so tragic. You know, we talk about these things and we go on with our lives but
those families are never going to be the same. The VTA family, those people who come everyday to have public transport work, they're never going to be the same.
In moments like this, you know, when you meet the families of people, you don't know what to say, and it's just so infuriating that we can't get our act together in Congress to pass some laws to prevent these kinds of mass shootings.
BOLDUAN: Congressman, thank you for coming on.
KHANNA: Thank you.
BOLDUAN: OUTFRONT for us next, federal prosecutors are now reportedly investigating whether Ukraine officials were using Rudy Giuliani to meddle in the 2020 election.
And President Biden's message now that more than half of the adult population in the U.S. is fully vaccinated.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're not just saving lives. We're getting our lives back.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Tonight, we're learning of a new federal investigation involving Rudy Giuliani. "The New York Times" is reporting federal prosecutors are probing whether Ukraine officials were part of a sweeping plan to meddle in the 2020 U.S. presidential election and if those officials used Giuliani to spread misleading claims about Joe Biden. This is a separate -- this as a separate probe is also looking into whether Giuliani violated foreign lobbying law by pushing to oust the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine. Oh, the tangled webs we weave.
OUTFRONT now, Elie Honig, CNN senior legal analyst and former assistant U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York.
So, Elie, "The New York Times says that Rudy Giuliani is not a subject in this new investigation.
But they are investigating if Ukrainian officials used him.
So, what does this new probe mean for Giuliani?
ELIE HONIG, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Yeah, Kate. So, the good news for Rudy is that he's not currently a subject in the Eastern District of New York investigation. Meaning those prosecutors don't have reason to believe he was involved in criminality.
However, if you look at the reporting, the theory here is that Ukrainian nationals interfered with the 2020 election, which is a crime, and they did it through Rudy Giuliani. So, there's really only two possibilities. If Rudy knew it was happening then he's part of this crime then he would be more than a subject, he would be a target. If he did not know, then perhaps he was just sort of unwitting puppet.
But that status could change based on one piece of evidence. There is a separate investigation in my old office at Southern District of New York, across the river. Any evidence that could be used against Rudy in the eastern district. That can go over to the southern district as well. That could hurt him in the other case.
BOLDUAN: So, it was one month ago that federal agents raided Giuliani's apartment as well as his office. They took 18 different electronic devices we ended up figuring out. And Giuliani has been protesting this and not surprisingly saying that violates attorney/client privilege.
But the judge is saying that's no go and is now going to be put in place an independent official known as a special master. And that person is going to be assigned to review of these seized materials to determine what could be used and what is privilege? So, is this good or bad news for Giuliani?
HONIG: This is good news for Rudy Giuliani. He's not super grateful about it but realistically, this is the most fair way this could possibly be done.
Now, Rudy Giuliani had suggested to the court, why don't you let me do the review, I will go through my document and I will decide what's privilege, and all the rest I'll give over to the prosecutors. The judge rightly sort of gave that the back of the hand, that's ridiculous. Nobody has the right to do that.
Instead what the judges done is agreeing with prosecutors. They'll appoint independent person who'll review each piece of evidence and decide independently if it's privileged. If it's privileged, prosecutors do not get it. And Rudy Giuliani will have a chance to weigh in on and object. So, he really can't complain at all about his rights being violated. This is as good and fair system as he could realistically hope for.
BOLDUAN: If this special master's job is to essentially silo out protected communication between Giuliani and his most famous client, Donald Trump, what does this step mean for Trump?
HONIG: Yeah, so there is two different types of communications that we could have here. If there are normal, legitimate attorney/client communications between Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump giving him legitimate legal advice, that would be privileged and prosecutors will not get it. However, if they are furthering a crime, if they are discussing an ongoing scheme relating to Ukraine or the 2020 election, that is not privileged, and that will go over to prosecutors. So, that's the concern I think as Donald Trump would see it. BOLDUAN: Interesting. Thank you, Elie.
HONIG: Thanks, Kate.
BOLDUAN: OUTFRONT next, millions traveling this Memorial Day as more states are lifting COVID restrictions. But some officials are worried still about the impact of big crowds this weekend.
And more Republican governors ending the boost in federal employment aid in order to get more Americans back to work. Is that the answer?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: First of all, I'm not lazy. I'm a full-time single mother.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: Tonight, President Biden delivering a message of hope with more than 50 percent of adults fully vaccinated going into Memorial Day weekend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: Americans of every party, every race, creed, have come together and roll up their sleeves literally and done their part.
Look at what it means? We're not just saving lives. We're getting our lives back.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BOLDUAN: In signs of normalcy across the country as people begin celebrating the holiday weekend. And Americans are traveling again, more than 1.8 million people flying yesterday.
OUTFRONT now, Dr. Jonathan Reiner, CNN medical analyst. He also advised the White House medical team under President George W. Bush.
Dr. Reiner, we looked back a year ago today you were on the show urging people to stay vigilant, wear a mask, saying that we are not at all close to containment. Now, one year later, how much different does Memorial Day feel?
DR. JONATHAN REINER, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: Oh, it is 180 degrees different. I think last year at this time, we were also talking about hydroxychloroquine, a blast from the past. You know, ironically, we have the same daily number of cases right now as we had a year ago.
The difference is that last year, they were about to exponentially rise and then do it again in the fall and even in worse way. And now, our cases are exponentially declining. So, a much better place. And I'll tell you that last year at this time, my young's daughter graduation from college has been cancelled. And tomorrow, my family gets on an airplane to go to St. Louis for that graduation. So, you know, we are in a much better place.
BOLDUAN: That's fantastic. I had no idea. Oh, congratulations. That's the best sign of all. That is wonderful Dr. Reiner.
I did speak to the mayor of Miami Beach earlier and he says, well, you know, things are looking good. He's still worried and mostly because of the crowds that are expected in Miami Beach that are coming. He said quite honestly too many people are coming and the virus is still here.
What's your message to folks, many traveling this weekend who are not vaccinated?
REINER: So, to people who are traveling and people who have been fully vaccinated, have a great time. Maybe say something nice to a flight attendant because they work in really dangerous circumstances throughout the pandemic. So, be kind to the flight attendants.
But for folks who have not been vaccinated, you can still get this virus and you can still die. So, we still have about 500 deaths per day.
Every single of those deaths essentially is somebody who has not been vaccinated.
So, if you need some incentive to get vaccinated, in addition to the lottery in your state, get it because, you know, you have something to live for. And I'll tell that if you go down to a place like Florida or you're going somewhere to party over Memorial Day weekend, and you are not vaccinated, do not go into a party. You can still get sick and you can still die from this. No one wants to be the last person to die from the coronavirus.
BOLDUAN: Absolutely not.
You know, there is new data published today from the Kaiser Family Foundation and it finds that most adults who want to be vaccinated have already started that process, which is wonderful.
They do write, though, notably vaccine hesitancy seemed to stall among Republicans, people that identify as Republicans with 27 percent, saying they will definitely not be getting vaccinated. Which then I have to say makes the false information and lies coming from folks who speak really loudly like Marjorie Taylor Greene, all the more hurtful.
She tweeted today something that doesn't matter that she's talking about CNN. It really does not. She said can someone inform CNN that COVID vaccines are not approved by the FDA. In other words, she writes, still experimental.
I mean, what do you say to that, Doctor?
REINER: I say that she's basically a font of feted (ph) misinformation. She does not know what she's talking about, and, you know, ordinarily I would ignore somebody like her, but what she's basically doing is she's telling people who are already vaccine hesitant that the vaccines are experimental.
They are not experimental. They have been well-studied in record time very well-studied, and now we have the additional experience of having administered shots to almost 300 million people. We know in real-time, in real world experience these vaccines are safe.
She does great damage. She's just not, you know, misinformed, she's dangerous.
BOLDUAN: Dr. Reiner, thank you for being here and have a wonderful time this weekend.
REINER: Thanks so much, Kate.
BOLDUAN: OUTFRONT next, some Republican governors cutting federal jobless benefits in order to boost hiring. But is it really that easy?
BOLDUAN: Tonight, President Biden unveiling his $6 trillion budget plan with much of the spending focused on boosting the economy.
The proposal comes as two dozen Republican-led states are now ending the extra $300 in unemployment benefits, a key feature of Biden's COVID recovery plan. The state saying the payments are keeping Americans from going back to work, but is it that simple?
Kyung Lah is OUTFRONT.
KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With just days to go until Montana summer tourist season kicks off, the skeleton crew at this hotel is already exhausted.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We'll probably leave those rooms for tomorrow.
LAH: Working extra hours because of staff shortages.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, trying to do 26 rooms in a day.
LAH: Joshua Dempsey (ph) believes people don't want to return to work because wages for jobs like this don't equal what pandemic unemployment pays.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I make $800 every two weeks. And like my friend gets like $800 a week, so like she doesn't want to work when she's making what I make in two weeks in a week. LAH: Not working at all?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not working at all.
LAH: Signs of a low wage worker shortage are up across Montana. More jobs than employees, especially low wage positions. Businesses her now offer signing bonuses and $15 an hour starting pay, nearly twice the state's minimum wage.
GOV. GREG GIANFORTE (R), MONTANA: Unemployment benefits should be a safety net, not a career choice.
LAH: This month, Republican Governor Greg Gianforte announced Montana will opt out of all federal pandemic unemployment benefit programs including an extra $300 per week supplement.
GIANFORTE: We're going to incent work, not staying home.
LAH: Instead, Montanans will receive a $1,200 bonus if they get a job and keep it for two weeks.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That was kind of a huge relief for me.
LAH: At least seven jobs at this hotel are vacant says general manager Ann Marie Bowers.
MARIE BOWERS, GENERAL MANAGER, JORGENSON INN AND SUITES: I anticipate and really hope that will mean more people will be applying.
LAH: Montana is not the only state. Most Republican governors in the country have promised to eliminate one more federal pandemic programs for the unemployed, but not all are able to return to the work force right away.
LACY COLON, SINGLE MOTHER COLLECTING UNEMPLOYMENT: First of all, I'm not lazy. I'm a full-time single mother.
LAH: Lacy Colon says she had never planned to be home full-time.
COLON: I was working in the mornings when she was at school and when COVID hit, it just changed everything.
LAH: Her daughter Juliana has sensory issues and can't wear the required mask for school. So, the former hospitality worker has been collecting unemployment to be here, home schooling since the pandemic began.
Pandemic unemployment benefits have allowed mother and daughter to stay in their home.
COLON: I'm going to be really scared, I already am. I don't sleep at night. I have to figure it out like everybody else has to figure it out.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is being portrayed as a worker shortage. What it really is is a wage shortage. LAH: Blaming the workers says a Montana AFL-CIO, ignores the economic
shock of the last year, forcing millions unto unemployment. Nationwide, the minimum wage has lagged behind as the cost of living has increased especially in states like Montana.
Dempsey says he doesn't even earn enough to rent a studio apartment.
Where are you living?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm living in a hotel right now.
LAH: Colon fears that will be her future.
Kyung Lah, CNN, Bozeman, Montana.
BOLDUAN: Thanks, Kyung.
Before we go tonight, if you're looking for a new book this Memorial Day weekend, check out colleague Jake Tapper's new novel "The Devil May Dance." It's available now.
And thank you all so much for being with us tonight.
I'm Kate Bolduan.
"AC360" starts now.