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Erin Burnett Outfront

Rittenhouse Testifies In His Own Defense, Breaks Down On Stand; In Dramatic Testimony, Kyle Rittenhouse Admits He Intentionally Used Deadly Force, But Didn't Intend To Kill; Biden: Inflation At 30-Yr High "Worrisome," But A "Top Priority;" Biden Touts Economic Plans, But Forced To Admit "Consumer Prices Remain Too High" As Report Shows Inflation At 30-Yr High; Sources: Jan 6 Panel Eyeing 5 People In Pence's Inner Circle; Washington Post: Trump Raisers $1+ Million Per Week Partly By Pushing The Big Lie In Fundraising Ads On Facebook. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired November 10, 2021 - 19:00   ET


WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: You can always tweet the show, @CNNSITROOM. And THE SITUATION ROOM, by the way, is also available as a podcast. Look for us on or wherever you get your podcasts.

Erin Burnett OUTFRONT starts right now.

ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next breaking news, Kyle Rittenhouse called to the stand and breaking down while testifying that he did nothing wrong when he killed two people during that night of unrest. Did the teen help or hurt his case?

Plus, President Biden forced to address tonight the sharp rise in consumer prices, up 6 percent over the past year, 31-year record. What will we do about it?

And live pictures tonight from the Kennedy Space Center before astronauts are buckled in, about to lift off. Details on their mission this evening. Let's go OUTFRONT.

And good evening. I'm Erin Burnett.

OUTFRONT tonight, Kyle Rittenhouse takes the stand. The team defiant during emotionally charged testimony that lasted today for seven hours. Rittenhouse claiming he did nothing wrong when he killed two people and injured a third during that night of unrest last year. At one point Rittenhouse breaking down and sobbing uncontrollably.




BURNETT: A jarring scene that led to short recess because of that. Rittenhouse is 18 years old. The judge also tearing into the prosecution twice, a vicious tongue-lashing for they're trying to introduce evidence that the judge had previously already said was prohibited. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JUDGE BRUCE SCHROEDER, KENOSHA COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT: You're an experienced trial attorney and you're telling me that when the judge says I'm excluding this, you just to take it upon yourself to put it in because you would think that you found a way around it? Come on.


BURNETT: Fireworks continuing as prosecutors cross examined Rittenhouse walking him and the jury through that night in Kenosha, Wisconsin basically almost minute by minute. Okay. There's a lot to get to tonight. I mean, it was a pretty incredible day to see a defendant take the stand like this, seven hours of the trial.

Omar Jimenez is OUTFRONT live in Kenosha. And Omar, you were in the courthouse today when Kyle Rittenhouse took the stand in his own trial, something that was not fully expected and many defense attorneys said they wouldn't have tried to do. But this defense team did it, what was it like?

OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Erin. This was the most dramatic day of testimony we've seen yet by a long shot. Not only did Kyle Rittenhouse take the stand in his own defense, but he broke down on the stand as did his mother as she watched from the seating and as both the defense and prosecution kept Rittenhouse in the most significant aspect of this trial, in and around the moments he pulled the trigger.


JIMENEZ(voice over): The most anticipated moment in the trial, Kyle Rittenhouse, taking the stand in his own defense


MARK RICHARDS, KYLE RITTENHOUSE ATTORNEY: Did you come to downtown Kenosha look for trouble?



JIMENEZ(voice over): He took the jury back to August 25th, 2020 when he said he and others volunteered to guard a car dealership in downtown Kenosha for property damage during protests following the shooting of Jacob Blake. Rittenhouse would go on to shoot three people killing two of them and wounding the third. Rittenhouse describes his first interactions with a man named Joseph Rosenbaum the first person he would later kill.


RITTENHOUSE: He screamed if I catch any of you (inaudible) alone I'm going to (inaudible) kill you.


JIMENEZ(voice over): And not long after he said he was cornered by Rosenbaum and a man named Joshua Ziminski, which began the sequence that led to the shooting of Rosenbaum.


RITTENHOUSE: Once I take that step back, I look over my shoulder and Mr. Rosenbaum was now running from my right side. And I was cornered from in front of me with Mr. Ziminski. And there were people right there ...


JIMENEZ(voice over): The judge called for a break and when Rittenhouse returned, less emotional now, he described the end of what became a chase with Rosenbaum following Rittenhouse.


RITTENHOUSE: There was no space for me to continue to run to.

RICHARDS: As you see him lunging at you, what did you do?

RITTENHOUSE: I shoot him.


JIMENEZ(voice over): Then others began chasing him as he testified he wanted to get to the police.


RICHARDS: Why were you trying to get to the police?

RITTENHOUSE: Because I didn't do anything wrong. I defended myself.



JIMENEZ(voice over): Soon, he describes being physically confronted by a still unidentified man trying to kick him.


RITTENHOUSE: As his boot is making contact with my face, I fired two shots at them.

RICHARDS: Why did you shoot him?

RITTENHOUSE: I thought if I were to be knocked out or he would have stomped my face if I didn't fire.


JIMENEZ(voice over): He missed those shots, but the next one was deadly as Anthony Huber hit Rittenhouse with a skateboard.


RITTENHOUSE: Mr. Huber runs up, he strikes me in the neck with his skateboard a second time. He grabs my gun and I can feel it pulling away from me.

RICHARDS: And what did you do then?

RITTENHOUSE: I fired one shot.


JIMENEZ(voice over): He then sees Gaige Grosskreutz, the only survivor of those Rittenhouse shot that night.


RITTENHOUSE: I see Mr. Grosskreutz with his hands up and as I'm lowering my weapon, I looked down and then Mr. Grosskreutz he lunges at me with his pistol pointed directly at my head.


JIMENEZ(voice over): So Rittenhouse shot him once.


RICHARDS: What happens after you shoot him?

RITTENHOUSE: He's no longer a threat to me.


JIMENEZ(voice over): During cross examination, the prosecution started with trying to paint a bottom line.


THOMAS BINGER, ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Everybody that you shot at that night you intended to kill.

RITTENHOUSE: I didn't intend to kill them, I intended to stop the people who were attacking me.

BINGER: By killing them.


JIMENEZ(voice over): The prosecution pushed further.


BINGER: You intentionally used deadly force against Joseph Rosenbaum, correct?


BINGER: You intentionally use deadly force against the man who came and tried to kick you in the face.


BINGER: Correct? You intentionally use deadly force against Anthony Huber, correct?


BINGER: You intentionally use deadly force against Gaige Grosskreutz, correct?



JIMENEZ(voice over): But then the prosecutor begins to talk about the timing of Rittenhouse's testimony after Rittenhouse has had a chance to hear others testify in this trial and seeing video of the night's events. The Judge interrupted citing Rittenhouse's Fifth Amendment rights.


SCHROEDER: The problem is this is a grave constitutional violation for you to talk about the defendant's silence.


JIMENEZ(voice over): So the questioning continued, but this time touched on a previous incident the Judge had not, as of Wednesday, allowed into trial. The judge had had enough.


BINGER: The court left the door open.

SCHROEDER: For me, not for you. I was astonished when you will begin your examination by commenting on the defendant's post arrest silence. That's basic law, it's been basic law in this country.

BINGER: For the (inaudible) ...

SCHROEDER: Don't get brazen with me.


JIMENEZ(voice over): The incidents prompted the defense to file a motion for mistrial with prejudice, meaning he could not be retried. The judge said he would take it under consideration and the prosecution returned to cross examination, going back to the shooting of Joseph Rosenbaum and a moment Rittenhouse briefly pointed the gun at him before the shooting.


BINGER: Why'd you pointed at him if you didn't have any intention of shooting?

RITTENHOUSE: He was chasing me, I was alone. He threatened to kill me earlier in that night. I didn't want to have to shoot him.

BINGER: But you understand how dangerous it is to point a gun at someone, don't you?

RITTENHOUSE: I pointed at him because he kept running at me and I didn't want him to chase me.


JIMENEZ(voice over): The same line of questioning also extended to Rittenhouse's shooting of Gaige Grosskreutz.


BINGER: Can you help me understand, Mr. Rittenhouse, why Gaige Grosskreutz with a pistol on his hand is a threat to kill you, but you with an AR-15 pointed at him is not a threat to kill him at this moment, can you help me understand that?

RITTENHOUSE: I've been attacked by several people and he decided to come and point a gun at my head. Well, first ...

BINGER: He hasn't done that yet, has he?




JIMENEZ(on camera): Now, the prosecutors' questioning lasted hours with Rittenhouse on the stand. And to give you an idea of the range of what we saw today, while the defense was making its motion for a mistrial, the Judge's ringtone of God bless the USA started playing. Timeline-wise, the Judge did tell the jury to expect to be done with this case by early next week with a chance of Monday, but the judge said he was very confident in this being over by Tuesday. Erin?

BURNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much. And now let's go to Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the former Defense Attorney and the former Mayor of Baltimore and Elie Honig, former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of New York.

So Mayor Rawlings-Blake, yesterday when you and I were talking, you said it would be a risky move for the defense to put Rittenhouse on the stand. And I think pretty much all defense attorneys felt that way, but today they did it. They did that. Do you think it paid off?

STEPHANIE RAWLINGS-BLAKE, FORMER MAYOR OF BALTIMORE: It was a big risk with a big reward. I think it definitely paid off for them. It not only gave Rittenhouse a chance to really emote and show how affected he was by what was happening at the time.


It also, unfortunately, for the prosecution gave them a chance to really, I think, screw it up with the Judge. They did not do themselves any favors today with the way he was questioning after repeated admonishments by the judge and I think they've really tripped themselves up unnecessarily.

BURNETT: So Mayor, when he broke down on the stand and they had to take that temporary recess. And that wasn't the only time, obviously, he was sort of on the verge of losing control, but truly distraught. Do you think the jury believed that was sincere?

RAWLINGS-BLAKE: Twelve people don't have to believe he was sincere, you just have to have one. And I think you have someone that's predisposed to think that he was sincere, to understand the chaos that was described by both prosecution and defense witnesses and then layer on that emotion. I think that he went a long way today towards establishing reasonable doubt.

BURNETT: So Elie, you've prosecuted murder cases before. The prosecution had Rittenhouse on the stand for several hours today. They have their chance to ask questions. I wanted to play one moment specifically, Elie, where they pressed Rittenhouse on why he didn't try to help the first man he shot when he was in Kenosha that night to help with medical aid. Let me play it.


BINGER: You're a medic, correct?

RITTENHOUSE: I have first aid training, yes.

BINGER: Well, you proclaimed yourself that night to be a medic, an EMT. You told everyone that right?


BINGER: And you had your medic bag with you, correct?


BINGER: And this location is right across the street from a hospital, isn't it?


BINGER: But your first thought was runaway.

RITTENHOUSE: My first thought was to help him.

BINGER: You didn't do anything to help him.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: So Elie, that's one example. But when you look at the cross

examination throughout the day by the prosecution, did they do an effective job? Did they do enough to prove that what he did was murder and not self-defense?

ELIE HONIG, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: I don't think so, Erin. I think overall today, the prosecution was lackluster. When you're trying any case, especially a murder case, you have to appeal to the jury's brain and to their heart. You have to win them over intellectually and sort of in the gut.

And I don't think the prosecution did either of those things today. Their cross examination, as the mayor said, was long. At times it was confusing. It was boring. And that matters because these are human beings, these jurors, and if you lose them, if you lose their attention, you're not going to get their vote in the verdict room.

I thought a lot of the cross examination focused on sort of peripheral, who cares issues. He drove without a license. He played video games. He was out past curfew. And there were confusing passages, why did you go from 60th to 63rd that were hard to follow.

My bottom line is this, next week when that jury is in that room deliberating, what moment from today are they going to point to and go, right there, that made him guilty of murder. I didn't see one.

BURNETT: So Rawlings-Blake, you heard Omar report about how the defense filed for a mistrial with prejudice, which would mean that you can't appeal it. If granted, that means Rittenhouse could walk away with no charges at all. Do you think the judge will grant this? That's a pretty incredible step here.

RAWLINGS-BLAKE: I think the prosecution is lucky that the judge isn't making that decision today. I mean, I think we all saw him today and how furious he was with the tactics that the prosecution was using. And again, the prosecution didn't do himself any favors. As Elie said, you have to win the hearts and the minds and you don't do that by being smug. And that's what we saw today, a prosecutor that was smug, that was combative in a way that I think is going to impact jury deliberations.

BURNETT: It's interesting you use the word smug. I mean, Elie, there were several instances today where the judge did really get angry at the prosecution. For the prosecutor, specifically, there for his line of questioning towards Rittenhouse. Let me just play another moment.


SCHROEDER: I was astonished when you will begin your examination by commenting on the defendant's post arrest silence. That's basic law. Don't get brazen with me.

You knew very well, you know very well that an attorney can't go into these types of areas when the judge has already ruled. You're an experienced trial attorney and you're telling me that when the judge says I'm excluding this, you just take it upon yourself to put it in because you think that you found a way around it? Come on.


BURNETT: So Elie, given what the prosecutor tried to do in terms of introducing evidence that the judge had said was already not allowed to be inserted - okay, so I guess there's kind of two questions here.


One, what do you make of the Judge's reaction? And two, do you think that it was an overreaction or was it warranted?

HONIG: Erin, in my 14 years as a prosecutor, I've definitely had my share of run-ins with judges. I've never seen a judge that angry. So first of all, the Judge needs to get a little bit of a hold of himself, that's over the top. That's excessive, that kind of lashing out at any lawyer.

That said, this was the prosecutor's fault. They got close to the line on the Fifth Amendment, the right to remain silent, which is an absolute no-go if you're a prosecutor and there was a piece of evidence that the Judge ruled before the trial, you cannot put this in front of the jury and the prosecutor just went and did it and the Judge was furious.

He said, look, if you think circumstances have changed and you can use this evidence now, you need to run it by me first. Everybody knows that, who's practiced in a court of law, so the prosecution brought this on itself.

BURNETT: All right. And Mayor Rawlings-Blake, I have to ask you one other thing that related to another big story in the news today. I understand you're in Houston tonight, that you spent the day meeting with Travis Scott. Of course, the rapper is facing multiple lawsuits and investigations after eight people died during his concert.

There's so many questions about what Scott knew, why he remained on stage, as we understand it for more than 30 minutes after this had been declared a mass casualty incident. What can you tell us about his thinking right now?

RAWLINGS-BLAKE: So yes, thank you for bringing that up, Erin. I was introduced to Travis Scott by a mutual friend who asked me to speak to him because he knows that I've been through traumatic experiences in a city that I love. And what I saw and what I heard when I talked to Travis, I spent over four hours with him today is he is devastated.

He is absolutely devastated, not just because of what happened and his heart is bleeding for his fans. He's started by telling me how everything he does is for his fans. So he's angry, he's upset that this happened and really upset too, because I think the finger- pointing is unproductive.

He, at his heart, wants to reach out to the families. He also wants to reach out to make sure that something like this never happens again. And that's what I'm working with him to make sure that we are talking with the administration here. We're talking with the promoters and we're doing everything that he can do in his power to make sure that no fan ever loses their life at another concert.

BURNETT: All right. Well, thank you very much. Mayor Rawlings-Blake and Elie, I appreciate your time.

And next, consumer prices surging at the fastest pace in 31 years.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Everything from a gallon of gas to loaf of bread cost more and it's worrisome.


BURNETT: Well, that may be a big understatement.

Plus, a CNN exclusive, we're now learning the January 6 Select Committee is interested in hearing from five former members of Mike Pence's inner circle. So who are they and what could they know?

And nearly 100 former national security officials with a grim warning tonight, the big lie they say is now threatening America's National Security itself.



BURNETT: Like President Biden addressing the surge in consumer prices that has been hurting America and threatening his presidency.


BIDEN: Today, I'm here to talk about one of the most pressing economic concerns for the American people and it's real. And that is getting prices down, number one.


BURNETT: Biden forced to address the inflation elephant in the room after a new report found consumer prices surged more than 6 percent from a year ago. That is the sharpest increase in 31 years and it's across all sorts of things. But let me just give you the example of gas, the price of a gallon of gas on average up 62 percent from a year ago, okay. And it's not just from last year, during the pandemic, this puts gasoline at a seven-year high, averaging $3.41 a gallon.

In places like California, Hawaii or Nevada, it's close to or even more than $4 a gallon, $4.63 in California, $4.34 in Hawaii. And Biden says the administration needs to do more, the thing is here he is just last week.


BIDEN: Wages have gone up higher faster than inflation. (END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Well, wages are not going up faster than inflation at the current time, just wages themselves have increased and they are up 5.1 percent on the year. Inflation, though, on a pure inflation to wages basis has wiped out those gains. It's up 6.2 percent. So that would mean all-in a negative impact on wages and that may be why in CNN latest poll, more Americans said the economy was the most pressing problem facing this country right now than any other issue by a significant margin, almost double the next one.

And of those who believe the economy is the most important issue, three quarters of them say Biden is not paying enough attention to it. Because when it comes to inflation, Biden's administration really for most of this year have been hopeful that the inflation problem would go away pretty quickly and we've heard this for months and months and months.


JANET YELLEN, UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY: My judgment right now is that the recent inflation that we have seen will be temporarily. It's not something that's endemic.

BIDEN: And by the way, talking of inflation, the overwhelming consensus is it's going to pop up a little bit and then go back down.

GINA RAIMONDO, COMMERCE SECRETARY: We do not have fears at this point related to persistent inflation.

YELLEN: Supply bottlenecks have developed that have caused inflation, I believe, that they're transitory.


BURNETT: OUTFRONT now Robert Reich, former U.S. Labor Secretary under President Clinton and Republican former Ohio Governor John Kasich, who served in Congress as the Chairman of the House Budget Committee. Great to have both of you back on and to have you on together.

So let's talk about inflation because it is such a crucial issue for Americans as the President points out, Secretary Reich. And consumer prices we now know surging at the fastest pace in 31 years and even those who say it is temporary, say it is going to continue for many months and, of course, it has been going on now for four months already. So what can Biden actually do about it at some point temporary becomes more than that?

ROBERT REICH, FORMER U.S. LABOR SECRETARY UNDER CLINTON: Well, there are a limited number of things he can do, Erin. One, he can try to open up some of the supply bottlenecks at America's ports, for example, train and make available more truckers.


I mean, in other words he can go around piece by piece where there just are these bottlenecks and try to open them up and he's trying to do that.

The second thing he can do is try to reduce some of the most significant consumer cost items, like prescription drugs, for example. I mean, if in fact, that measure goes through, allowing Medicare to negotiate with pharmaceutical companies, lower prescription drug prices, that would be a tremendous relief for American consumers. Childcare would also be a huge relief at a time of crisis.

And the third thing he can do is really vigorously use antitrust law, because as you know, one of the big puzzles today is that corporate profits are at record highs and yet the corporations are passing on all these price increases to consumers. If they were really in a competitive market, if we were not dealing with monopolies or what we call oligopolies, these companies would not so easily just simply pass these prices on to consumers. They'd be worried about their competitors.


REICH: But they're not and I think antitrust enforcement has got to go after these sources of huge market power, this corporate market power in the United States right now.

BURNETT: Yes. Well, of course, one of the issues with inflation is once it gets into the system, it can become really hard to get out. That's why I pointed out that sound bite, those different sound bites that go back to May. There's all kinds of reasons for prices going up right now, you point out transportation, all of that fair, but people aren't eating more than they were eating a year ago and yet we're seeing inflation across all the food groups as well.

So it starts to get in the system, it gets really hard to cut out, Gov. Kasich. Where are we in the process?

JOHN KASICH, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: It's insidious. Yes, it's insidious.

Look, inflation, in my view is really comes from bad monetary policy. I mean, this has been an argument going on since Robert Reich and I weren't even born, people have argued about this.


KASICH: But when you keep pumping money into the economy, you have too many dollars chasing too few goods. On top of that, you don't have significant amounts of investment today, which gives workers the tools to be more productive. So you've seen an explosion of money in this economy.

And look, Larry Summers, the former Treasury Secretary ...


KASICH: ... he's really a pretty remarkable guy. He's been warning about this inflation by looking at these programs ...

BURNETT: Since February.

KASICH: ... for a significant period of time.


KASICH: Yes, and was dismissed over and over and over again, so it is insidious. But there's another part that we have to think about when we think about economics and I know you know this, Erin, and that is there's two sides. There's the supply side and the demand side.

And I think the administration today is focusing too much on the demand side. We have a supply problem and let me give a good example.

When you shut down pipelines, when you disrupt the fracking which can produce more energy independence for us, when you shut it down, prices go up. You don't have the supply and yet you still have the demand. The same thing is true in this whole area of supply chain. What's happening there?

All the prices are going up, because there's a lot of demand, but there's no supply. So what do you do to fix it? There's things you can do to fix it, but these are the things that have caused this and it's insidious and it's hard to get it out.

BURNETT: So Secretary, let me ask you about a point here that the Governor is making. And I understand there's different ways of looking at it, but he's making the point that the more money you give to the demand side, they then demand more and they want more, but you don't have the supply. And that becomes a really, really tough inflation problem. Okay.

So some of the things you may see as positives, Child Tax Credit, things like that, that a lot of people think are great things. That puts more money into the system. Some people concerned about that, include the Democratic Senator Joe Manchin, who is obviously, of course, is going to be crucial to passing that legislation you're referring to with child care.

Today, he's talked about the additional spending and the inflation issue. He tweeted, "By all accounts, the threat posed by record inflation to the American people is not 'transitory' and is instead getting worse. From the grocery store to the gas pump, Americans know the inflation tax is real and D.C. can no longer ignore the economic pain Americans feel every day."

And as the governor pointed out, the former Treasury Secretary Summers who you know well, Secretary, has warned Biden is pumping too much money into the economy, that that's part of the problem not the solution. Why is that wrong?

REICH: Well, first of all, I take my cue from Jerome Powell, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board who says that he is not going to raise interest rates, he's not going to do anything to stem what people are concerned about in terms of inflation because he does believe it's temporary, he thinks it's supply bottlenecks. The other point and I want to just build a little bit on what Gov.

Kasich said, because I think he's right. I think the supply side needs to be looked at, but we also have to be acknowledging that we have not been through a pandemic like this and over a hundred years.


We don't really know consequences. And the fact of the matter is that the pandemic being almost over -- we hope -- that pandemic generated huge pent-up demand for all kinds of goods and services.

And so, the combination of the pandemic being almost over, we don't really know the dynamics there. But people spending a lot and having a great deal of discretionary income, combined with supply bottlenecks. Well, this is what you, presumably, would expect. But again, we have not been through this before. There is no -- there is no playbook.

But I think Jerome Powell is probably right. This is temporary. I think in four months, five months, we'll look behind us and say this is no longer a problem.

BURNETT: Yeah. Governor, what -- what do you say? Of course, you know, again, I am not trying to define temporary but obviously, at that point we would be well a year into this.

KASICH: Yeah, at some point, temporary does become sort of ongoing. But Robert makes a good point here when he talks about the pent-up demand. And as the -- as the virus has begun to fade, other countries now have increased demand. So that's all part of it.

But if you really want to fix this, you can't keep putting dollars into this economy, number one. And number two, you can't have programs that punish business for this reason. You want business to invest so when they invest, workers can have tools. They can produce more which means their wages go up. It begins to stabilize prices.

That's what needs to be done. I think if we do that, we'd be on the right track and I hope Robert and I can continue this conversation and we'll see. We'll see where we are. Thank you.

REICH: Excuse me, governor. Let's -- but -- but the interesting thing here is that we have record-corporate profits. I mean, we're not talking about corporations that are hard up right now. Corporations in America -- big corporations -- have never done as well.

And that seems to me to be an interesting and very odd aspect of the economy right now when we are talking about inflation.

BURNETT: I am going to hit pause but I do think that's -- well, there is a whole lot to talk about with wages and investment and -- and of course, you know, their -- their share of taxes as well.

Thank you, both, very much. I appreciate it.

KASICH: All right. Thank you. BURNETT: And next, a CNN exclusive. CNN learning former-pence staffers may be willing to cooperate with the January 6th select committee. So, what could these former aides know?

And new pictures from NASA's Kennedy Space Center. Astronauts inside the SpaceX Crew Dragon Capsule, buckled in, prepared to take off, bound for the ISS.



BURNETT: Tonight, a CNN exclusive. Sources familiar with the January 6th select committee revealing that it is interested in gathering information from at least five members of former Vice President Pence's inner circle, including Pence's former chief counsel Greg Jacob, former national security adviser Keith Kellogg who was subpoenaed by the committee yesterday, and the former chief of staff, Marc Short who, of course, is familiar to many of you, appeared many times on this program.

Ryan Nobles is OUTFRONT.

And, Ryan, I know you are learning some of these Pence aides are actually appearing like they are going to cooperate with the committee. They are going to come in. There's no Steve Bannon here.

So tell me about what you know and why they could be so significant.

RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, you know, Erin, I talked to the chairman of the select committee, Bennie Thompson, about this last week and asked him specifically about their engagement with Pence aides and he said it was a mixed bag. There were some that were willing to talk to them on some level and others they were having a difficult time with and that was reflected in the subpoena of Keith Kellogg which we saw yesterday, who is, of course, Pence's former national security adviser who was actually thought to be a little more close with the former-President Donald Trump than he is with Mike Pence, which might be part of his reluctance.

But what committee members have been telling me about this engagement is that they want to know, specifically, what these Pence aides know not only about what happened to Pence on that day, just how serious the threat was against him and what security protocols were put in place to protect him. But also, about the pressure campaign that was put on him in the weeks after the November election leading up to January 6th.

Of course, as you know, Erin, there was an intense campaign -- the Stop the Steal movement -- that was really centered around Mike Pence coming to the Congress on the day of January 6th when those electors were certified to try and get him to overturn the results.

The committee wants to know who was putting on that pressure and if it was part of what led to the violence and chaos on that day, Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Ryan.

So I want to go straight to the Democratic Congresswoman Elaine Luria from Virginia of the she is a member of the January 6th Select Committee. I'm sorry.

Congresswoman, it's good to have you back to talk about these issues.

So, sources telling us some of former Vice President Pence's aides, so far, appear more willing to engage with your committee than previously made public.

So, let me just ask you, pointblank, are you finding that they are going to cooperate and tell you everything they know?

REP. ELAINE LURIA (D-VA): Well, Erin, you know, as I said before when -- when we chatted is that -- I am not going to discuss individual people who are coming on their own volition to discuss details of January 6th with the committee but what I will say is that we have had over 150 witnesses interviewed by the committee who have approached us voluntarily or come at the committee's request to provide information.

And obviously, all of those surrounding both the president and vice president and the events leading up to January 6th, understand their actions and their thoughts and their thought process through these events are important to the committee. So we will continue to pursue them.

BURNETT: So let me ask you a crucial question, then. You don't need to get into specific names but, do you have enough right now to build the story and the details that you need to, to understand what happened and what the president knew -- the former president -- and what his role was? Or are people, individuals who are not cooperating or who don't seem like they're going to cooperate, do you think you are going to need them to be able to construct that full narrative?

LURIA: This is a complex investigation that, you know, requires a lot of input, a lot of witnesses, and a lot of different details. So what I would say is we are gradually, we are building that.


There is building blocks of things that are public, that are very well-known statements that ever been made by individuals close to the situation. But every witness we speak to provides additional pieces to that puzzle to help paint a more full picture.

So, these are incredibly important interviews that we've had with people who are coming forward willingly and we are seeking information, as well, from others.

BURNETT: So today, your committee urged a judge to reject a last- minute bid by the former President to keep White House documents secret while Trump appeals a ruling that -- the ruling, so far, is that these documents are not covered by executive privilege, right? So he is trying to say, well, until this gets all the way through the appeals process, you shouldn't be allowed to have it. Now, if the judge does not grant in his favor -- rule in his favor

here, you are going to start getting these documents possibly I know as soon as Friday, right? So you are going to start getting a lot of information. He succeeds. I don't know how long it could be.

It could be a while. It could be months. You got to go through an appeals process. Where does this stand?

LURIA: It's very favorable the ruling by the judge to say that, you know, in this case, executive privilege does not apply, to the former president, and it's a case where both -- you know, Congress and executive branch agree in the legislative purpose, the intent of this investigation, and the need for these documents.

And that is moving forward. But, you know, President Trump -- former President Trump, I would say, is, you know, trying to do everything as one would expect to stop this. And to stop this critical information from reaching the committee and the American public but I have full confidence that we will continue to receive a multitude of sources of information that we need to complete this investigation. And, you know, I'm hopeful that, you know, his efforts to stop this will not be successful.

BURNETT: Congresswoman Luria, I appreciate your time. Thank you.

LURIA: Thank you.

BURNETT: And next, two "Reuters" reporters tracking people who are going after election officials, including a man in Utah who threatened my next guest messaging her, quote, I hope you die. Hear that man's surprising response when personally confronted.

Plus, team Trump raking in millions of dollars despite being banned on Facebook. So, how are they doing it?



BURNETT: Tonight, nearly 100 former national security officials from both parties -- Democrats and Republicans -- issuing an urgent warning that the undermining of America's elections is a national security threat. The group calling on Congress to act now, writing, quote, we have strong democratic institutions and traditions but they are being placed in severe jeopardy in the current climate. We call on you to meet this challenge squarely and put in place the defenses that will safeguard the integrity of our sacred democratic institutions.

The officials also demanding more be done to protect election workers facing threats, simply for doing their jobs.

OUTFRONT now, Colorado's Democratic secretary of state, Jena Griswold, one of the election officials who has received death threats. She is also chair of the Democratic association of secretaries of state.

Secretary Griswold, these national security officials are sounding the alarm. They are urging Congress to protect election officials, including yourself. You and many others have faced a steady stream of horrific threats over the past year.

So, is there something specific that you think Congress could do to protect election officials?

JENA GRISWOLD (D), COLORADO SECRETARY OF STATE: Well, first, thanks for having me on. I really appreciate it. And it's just so welcoming to hear those voices of support because we are seeing not hundreds but thousands of threats to election officials across this country simply for doing our job. And we do need support. We need support from the federal government to prosecute those who are trying to intimidate the -- the -- the safeguards of democracy, election workers. We need the FBI to be monitoring these threats, and we need states to also act to provide security.

BURNETT: You know, it's -- it's -- you know, I am thinking I have talked to, you know, Republican election officials in Pennsylvania. Or Republican election officials in Georgia. They have talked about horrible, you know, sexual threats that they've received. Their children have received death threats.

I mean, it is horrific what people have gone through and some of them are quitting. They are quitting because of it and you can understand why.

You know, Reuters reporters Linda So and Jason Szep have published that remarkable investigation. I mentioned it a moment ago. But they are tracking down some of the people who have threatened election officials like yourself. They are actually finding these individuals.

And one of them was a man in Utah who sent you a Facebook message in august and, secretary, it says in part this message, quote: Watch your back, I know where you sleep. I see you sleeping. Be afraid. Be very afraid. I hope you die.

Now, Reuters found that man. And they confronted him. And his response was he was surprised that what he did was seen as threatening.

What would surprise me and the Reuters reporters probably is that man's threat was never investigated by police.

That's pretty incredible. What's your reaction to that? Never investigated by police and his reaction is, why was someone upset?

GRISWOLD: Well, I -- I share that reaction and I think that's part of the frustration being felt across the nation. There are so many people -- both sides of the aisle -- that work in elections.

They -- and it's tough. I will tell you, Erin, it's tough. It's long hours, complex systems but they do it because they love this country. They love the idea that American voters get to choose their elected officials. And I think it's -- that's just one example of the -- the thousands of threats coming in and it's affecting institutions.

One-third of election workers say they're afraid. I think any reasonable person getting a message like that, that someone's watching you while you sleep and you should be afraid, would think twice.


GRISWOLD: And 40 percent of election workers working in large jurisdictions are considering retiring because of the amount of vitriol. So this is an attack, of course, a personal attack. It is directed towards me, though, the one that you are reading but this is an attack on institutions. It's an attack on democracy.

So it's part of the coordinated effort we are seeing right now to destabilize American elections, pass voter suppression, and try to take away Americans' freedoms to cast ballots.

BURNETT: All right. Secretary Griswold, I appreciate your time. Thank you.


GRISWOLD: Thank you so much.

BURNETT: And next, donations are pouring into Trump's campaign coffers and the amount of money that former President Trump is pulling in right now is incredible, especially considering he hasn't even said he's running. Wait until you hear the numbers and how he is doing it.

And the door to Crew Dragon now has been closed. We are getting closer to liftoff at Kennedy Space Center.



BURNETT: Tonight, nearly half of Americans say they know someone who believes a conspiracy theory because of Facebook. This is according to a new CNN poll. And it comes as Trump rakes in millions of dollars off spreading the big lie on Facebook. By the way, just want to emphasize banned from the site, but the fundraising is incredible. Wait until you hear it.

Tom Foreman's OUTFRONT.



TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's a whopping amount even in big-money politics. Close to a million dollars a week according to "The Washington Post." that is how fast donations are pouring in for the man who lost the last presidential election, and has yet to declare he's in the next one.

LARRY NOBLE, FORMER FEC OFFICIAL, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: One of the things raising money this early does is it shows his power to the party. And I think you see that effect in terms of people being afraid to take him on. FOREMAN: Team Trump is raking in donations through the same America

Political Action Committee, the Save America joint fundraising committee, the Make America Great Again Again Super PAC and others. Collectively, his political group's reported more than $100 million on hand this past summer.

TRUMP: Hillary conceded. I never conceded. Never.


FOREMAN: Powering it all is an energetic campaign of direct solicitation e-mails. Promising signed baseballs, t-shirts, Christmas decorations, like this stocking for $50. All, feeding off supporters who have embraced the big lie.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The election was stole from us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Trump won in a landslide.

FOREMAN: And there are ads, especially on Facebook where Trump, himself, has been banned. But his fundraisers have not, calling the 2020 election corrupt, tainted, and Trump, the true president.


Some have continued the controversial practice of pre-checked boxes, which can unwittingly lead supporters into automatically increasing their donations. As far as spending the sizeable war chest, the Trump Organization has reported giving little to Republican candidates even as the party hopes to regain congressional majorities in next year's midterm election.

And when it comes to 2024, the limits on donors, the demand for reporting, the rules about spending get more complicated the moment he declares his candidacy. So, he is still playing coy.

TRUMP: Make America Great Again, Dash, slash, comma, again. Make America Great Again Again. I don't know.


FOREMAN: A spokesman for the former president said he really is committed to helping his party win next year but you know what they're not saying anymore? What Trump used to say. "I'm so rich, I'll pay for it all myself. I'll never be beholden to donors." That has been washed away in this flood of money -- Erin.

BURNETT: Right and, of course, he showed that to never -- never be his true intent, not how he's ever run anything.

FOREMAN: Never going back there.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Tom.

And next, the astronauts. They are buckled in. You are looking at live pictures there of Kennedy space center. Said to be in good spirits. They are now making their final preparations for the incredible moment of takeoff.


BURNETT: Tonight, ready for liftoff. You see it there on your screen. SpaceX, about one hour away from launching four more astronauts to the International Space Station. You are looking at pictures from the Kennedy Space Center where the hatch was closed just moments ago, after the four astronauts suited up.

Now, they are going to be in space for about six months and they are going to be conducting a lot of research. NASA says its mission to the moon, meantime, despite all these great achievements and all the private companies involved, that the moon landing is going to be pushed back to at least 2025. It's ironic that they are blaming the setback partly on litigation by Jeff Bezos and Blue Origin because Bezos's Blue Origin tried to challenge the contract with Elon Musk, which, of course, has been incredibly successful and effective at getting astronauts to the ISS.

The landing on the moon had been set for 2024 by the Trump administration. The goal is to set up a long-term presence on the lunar surface so astronauts can learn how to live and work. And there -- you know, incredibly low gravity, right, to provide a roadmap to land humans on Mars.

Thanks for joining us.

Anderson starts now.