Return to Transcripts main page
Erin Burnett Outfront
Lawmakers Hold Vigil On Capitol Steps A Year After Riot; Biden: Americans Need To "Step Up" So That Jan 6 Does Not Mark The "End Of Democracy," But "A Renaissance Of Liberty"; Biden Honors Officers Dragged, Stomped During Jan 6 Riot; More Than 140 Officers Injured, Some Hospitalized; Biden Calls Out Republicans Who Refuse To Stand Up To Trump; Djokovic Believed To Be At Detention Hotel In Australia; Chicago Public School Classes Cancelled Again Friday. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired January 06, 2022 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They're not interested in what happened. They want to hang Donald Trump.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): And that is what many in Trump world take for truth, Wolf.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: Tom Foreman reporting for us. Thank you very much.
And to our viewers, thanks for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer on Capitol Hill.
Erin Burnett OUTFRONT starts right now.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, one year after the deadly insurrection, President Biden addresses the nation placing the blame squarely on Trump, as we're learning new details tonight about the former President's actions one year ago today.
Plus, she lost her longtime partner, Officer Brian Sicknick, after the deadly riot and tonight she has a message for those in Washington.
And also this hour an alarming report on how so many Republicans are seizing on Trump's big lie in order to win their elections and change voting laws. Let's go OUTFRONT.
And good evening. I'm Erin Burnett.
OUTFRONT tonight, one year since the deadly assault on the United States Capitol. Just a short time ago, members of the House and Senate gathering on the steps of the Capitol for a prayer vigil. The site where one year ago today, the world watched in horror as thousands of Trump supporters stormed the capitol in an effort to overturn the election. It was a dark and important day in American history.
And today, President Biden address it head on in his most passionate address to the nation yet saying America needs to use January 6, to renew our democracy.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I know how difficult democracy is. And I'm crystal clear about the threats America faces. But I also know that our darkest days can lead to light and hope. So, now let us step up, write the next chapter in American history where January 6th marks not the end of democracy, but the beginning of a renaissance of liberty and fair play.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And Biden taking it farther on responsibility and accountability, calling Trump out directly, personally for his lies and for inciting the attack.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: The former president of the United States of America has created and spread a web of lies about the 2020 election. He's done so because he values power over principle, because he sees his own interests as more important than his country's interests and America's interests, and because his bruised ego matters more to him than our democracy or our Constitution.
He can't accept he lost.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: The dark reality, though, tonight is this, 71 percent of Republicans still believe the election was stolen. That's the latest poll from ABC News. Even now, 429 days after the election.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSHUA PRUITT, ACCUSED CAPITOL RIOTER: I do believe the election was stolen, for sure.
JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: And you still believe that?
PRUITT: I still believe it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Trump won the election. They've proven it over and over again.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think Biden won the election?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't believe he did.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Trump won, yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. I think it was - the machines were rigged.
(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: Look, these things are all false. They're just not true, not
a single thing, and it's dangerous. And on the anniversary of an insurrection, which was fueled by Americans belief in those lies, we're now learning that as rioters were storming the Capitol, breaking windows, attacking police, an official tells CNN that Trump initially refused to include the words stay peaceful in his tweet that was sent out not even till 2:38 when he said, "Please support our Capitol police and law enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful."
According to the official, Trump wanted to let the violence play out and then just pull on for this, Trump's former Press Secretary is giving us some crucial guidance. We know Trump was watching TV, watching all this go on well. Stephanie Grisham says Trump was 'gleefully watching the violence unfold' and hitting rewind, so that he could watch it again, loving it every moment of what he saw.
And that is why it is so tragic. Everyone should be able to understand that Trump's behavior is wrong. If for the most part today, Republicans did everything they could to avoid talking about what happened January 6th. In the House, only two Republicans were present for the moment of silence and only one of them is an elected Republican right now, Congresswoman Liz Cheney. She was there along with her father, the former Vice President Dick Cheney.
There were a couple of statements, including one from Mitt Romney who wrote, "We ignore the lessons of January 6 at our own peril.
Democracy is fragile; it cannot survive without leaders of integrity and character who care more about the strength of our Republic than about winning the next election."
Well, every Republican should be out saying that. I mean, it shouldn't be controversial. This is the United States of America. They all should understand the grave nature of the attack on January 6th and the danger to America's democracy. But instead, they turn a blind eye. And in his speech today, Biden called them out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: You can't love your country only when you win. You can't obey the law only when it's convenient. You can't be patriotic when you embrace and enable lies. Those who stormed this Capitol and those who instigated and incited and those who called on them to do so held a dagger at the throat of America - at American democracy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And that dagger is still there, because a disturbing number of Americans now, right now, think it's okay to rise up against their government. According to a recent poll 40 percent of Republicans think violence against the government is sometimes justified. It don't just say this is a GOP problem, it's 41 percent of Independents who believe the same thing. And Democrats who were on the winning side of the election, 23 percent of them are saying they believe violence is sometimes okay.
None of that is okay. No one should be okay with those numbers.
OUTFRONT now Gloria Borger, CNN Chief Political Analyst, John Avlon, Senior Political Analyst and Jamie Gangel, our Special Correspondent.
So John, let me start with you, former speechwriter yourself, you see President Biden address the nation today with real vehemence and passion in his voice that we frankly have not heard before in an address like this from him. How important was this moment?
JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: It was an historic moment. And he met the moment with the strongest speech of his presidency to date. He was strong, as you said, he was resolute. And there was vivid language that not only condemned the former president for the actions he took that led to the insurrection, but redirected the energy of the moment towards defending our democracy.
And with imagery like holding a knife to the throat of our democracy, that's the language that will stick in people's minds and hopefully, help us strengthen our civic backbone to meet the future together.
BURNETT: So Gloria, also President Biden, he talked about democracy, talked about the importance, but he also put the blame, and he called it out and he was very clear, something again that until now we have not heard him do like this. Here he is.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: The former president and his supporters are trying to rewrite history. They want you to see Election Day as the day of insurrection and the riot that took place here on January 6th as the true expression of the will of the people.
Can you think of a more twisted way to look at this country - to look at America?
He's a defeated former president - defeated by a margin of over 7 million of your votes in a full and free and fair election.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Gloria he has never spoken like that before.
GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: No, he hasn't. I mean, you got the sense listening to Biden that he has been thinking about this for a long time this year, and that he finally got it off his chest. And it's almost as if he were an attorney making a closing argument to a jury of the American public saying, look at what this guy did.
So he not only sees Trump as challenging democracy itself, but he's also challenging Joe Biden's legitimacy as President of the United States and Biden is angry about it. And he's angry what Trump has done to the country and he finally told the country a year after January 6, just how he feels about it. I mean, there was no way he was going to get up there today and kind
of be wishy-washy. I think he decided that he had to tell it straight.
BURNETT: And the thing is, though, Jamie, I quoted Mitt Romney, Lisa Murkowski, a senator also put out a statement. She was loud and clear. Let me just quote from her, Jamie, said, "The U.S. Capitol was stormed by a mob incited by our former president." She can't be any clearer than that. She continues, "Those of us who were there to fulfill our constitutional responsibilities can never erase what we saw and heard."
Look, those are firm statements, resolute statements, Jamie. On the floor today, though, Liz Cheney was the only elected Republican on the House floor and most Republicans elected they dismissed the January 6th attack. I mean, what are you hearing from Republicans about why everyday there seem to be fewer in Washington willing to take a stand?
JAMIE GANGEL, CNN SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT: Look, someone like Liz Cheney is clearly very disappointed and frankly, finds it hard to believe because when she speaks to her colleagues privately, they say to her, keep doing it, you're doing the right thing. But I mean, those statements from Murkowski and Romney they're very nice statements, but where were they today?
Can you imagine that Dick Cheney returns to the House of Representatives and he is warmly welcomed by Democrats? The absence of any other Republicans today was just - it couldn't have been any more striking.
BURNETT: John, here's what we actually heard from Republicans today on camera. Here's Ron DeSantis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RON DESANTIS (R) FLORIDA: I think it's going to end up being just a politicized Charlie Foxtrot today. I don't expect anything good to come out of anything that Pelosi and the gang are doing. I don't expect anything from the corporate press to be enlightening. I think it's going to be nauseating, quite frankly.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And Ron DeSantis is now a standard bearer for the GOP, John.
AVLON: Yes. And you know what's nauseating, besides that statement? January 6th. Having a big line metastasized throughout an entire political party with a few rare and honorable exceptions. And for phony Ivy League populace like Ron DeSantis, to play to the cheap seats, to try to make the issue the commemoration of an attack on our democracy and attempt to overturn the heart of our government to say that the coverage is the problem, not the act of trying to overturn a government - an election by a sitting president who he supports, when he's still won't come out and clearly condemn those actions. That's what's disgusting. That's what's pathetic. BURNETT: And Gloria, here's what Congresswoman Liz Cheney said today
when she was asked about where the Committee is in the investigation specifically about Mike Pence, who was in the room that day. People calling to hang him, his life in jeopardy, here's what she said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): Former Vice President Pence was a hero on January 6th. He refused the pressure of the former president. We look forward to continuing the cooperation that we've had with members of former Vice President's team and look forward as well to his cooperation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Were you hearing about how this might play out. Gloria?
BORGER: Can you tell the Committee who wants to hear from Mike? How many people from that Committee have we heard calling Mike Pence a hero? They clearly want to have him come in voluntarily. I don't think it's in the cards that they would ever subpoena a former sitting Vice President. They'd like to see him face-to-face.
At this point, we don't know when or if that would happen. It's been suggested to me that perhaps Mike Pence could answer written questions, who knows if they would even offer that as a possibility. It didn't go so well Mueller when he had President Trump answering written questions. But clearly, Mike Pence is so key to their investigation. He was the target of a lot of this violence on January 6th, as you just pointed out, so they need to talk to him.
BURNETT: So Jamie, you have a lot of reporting on this. What are you hearing about whether Pence will cooperate and in what form?
GANGEL: So the conventional wisdom is seem to be that Mike Pence - that it would be very unlikely that he would cooperate. But to Gloria's point, I think the door is still open. And there's some evidence of that and that is that Mike Pence's top aides, his closest, his former chief of staff, his former counsel, they're cooperating with the Committee.
Liz Cheney put that on the record today. And my understanding is the relationship is very good. I think that what she said today, and as Gloria said that they're calling him a hero. One other source said to me today, the committee keeps talking about how 'Pence played a crucial role in upholding democracy and he has an important story to be told'. They are trying to do everything they can to get him in the door.
BURNETT: We will see. Of course, that is the crucial question right now. Thank you all very much.
And next, Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick lost his life after responding to the Capitol riot. His longtime partner joins me with what she wants to see now.
Plus, the lengths Republicans are going to, to capitalize on Trump's big lie, even firing at fake Dominion voting machines.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. RON HANKS (R-CO): I'm Ron Hanks and I approve this message.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And we're learning tonight that then-Vice President elect Kamala Harris was inside the DNC when that pipe bomb was discovered outside.
BURNETT: New tonight, we're learning for the first time that Kamala Harris was evacuated from the Democratic National Committee on January 6th, just minutes after a pipe bomb was discovered nearby. Now, White House official and a former law enforcement official confirmed this to CNN.
So not long after that pipe bomb was discovered, hundreds of police officers defending the U.S. Capitol were viciously attacked by the mob, rioters threatening the officers calling them traitors. Five of those officers ultimately lost their lives, four by suicide. More than a hundred other officers were injured. Some of them needing hospitalization.
President Biden and others honoring the sacrifices made that day by the officers including Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: ... Officer Brian Sicknick, who lost his life the day after the attack.
MERRICK GARLAND, ATTORNEY GENERAL: In recognition of the service and sacrifice of Officer Brian Sicknick ...
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): U.S. Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick ...
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: OUTFRONT now, Sandra Garza, the longtime partner of Brian Sicknick. And Sandra, I'm sorry to talk to you today. I know that tomorrow is the anniversary of Brian's loss for you after he bravely defended the U.S. Capitol one year ago today. How are you coping with this and feeling today?
SANDRA GARZA, LONGTIME PARTNER OF FALLEN CAPITOL POLICE OFFICER BRIAN SICKNICK: Well, I feel a mix of emotions. First, I just want to say as I was waiting for my segment to begin, I saw that clip of Ron DeSantis and that infuriated me.
[19:20:00] How insensitive for him to make those comments just as much as I get
infuriated when I hear Gohmert, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Lauren Boebert and other scumbags within the Republican Party that make these terrible insensitive comments and downplay the horrific things that happened on January 6.
And it just makes me incredibly angry and I believe, if I'm not mistaken, and you can correct me here, Marjorie Taylor Greene and Louie Gohmert and others actually went into the jail to visit some of the rioters which - they haven't visited me. They haven't visited any of the families of the officers who were injured or any of the families of the officers who committed suicide. It's just disgusting.
BURNETT: Well, and there's many officers to visit, as you point out, five officers died.
GARZA: That's right.
BURNETT: More than a hundred were injured. They're all in the metropolitan area.
GARZA: That's right.
BURNETT: So they certainly could have if they wanted to do so.
We hear about the head of the Capitol Police was speaking, the Capitol Police Chief earlier, saying the full force right now is now still 400 officers short of full capacity. Now, I know that Brian served on the Capitol Police for more than 12 years. I mean, he was passionate about that. He had committed himself to that. What would he think of all this, that this is where we are now?
And I guess I say this in the context of conversations you and I have had I know that Brian's politics were not - that this would have shocked him.
GARZA: Yes, it would have. I can't say that I'm surprised they've lost this many officers. I mean, they were screaming loud and clear that they wanted change. And they didn't really get much change from what I know, I mean, and in fairness I'm not an employee with the Capitol Police. But from what I know and I've heard from the officers that I keep in contact with, they actually like Chief Sunday. A lot of them have said that they felt he was the fall guy.
And the people that are still there, a year later, who they actually didn't feel really had their backs or really did what they were supposed to do, and this is just factual, okay, are still there and there really hasn't been any accountability. So they can expect morale to increase and people to stay, if they don't feel their voices are heard.
I've heard them say they feel like a lot of politics are going on and instead of what's in their best interest and that's just how they feel and what I've been told.
BURNETT: Right. GARZA: Again, I'm not an employee there. I don't work there.
BURNETT: Right. No, I understand, but I mean, it's important context and nuance here, because you're talking about 400 shy in an environment where plenty of Americans obviously still believe the election was rigged. They believe violence is justified and yet here we are.
BURNETT: And we did just find out, I don't know if you heard at the very top as I was introducing you Sandra that Vice President-elect Harris at the time, she was actually at the DNC and evacuated after that pipe bomb was discovered nearby, that day she was actually there. And the person who planted that pipe bomb is, well, still on the loose. One of more than 350 people, in fact, Sandra, who have not been identified, and therefore not held accountable for their actions related to the insurrection. How does that make you feel?
GARZA: It's terrifying. It's very upsetting. I have to say, there's two things going on here. One, what we just discussed. You had a lot of officers within the Capitol police leave, so you're down a lot of officers there. And then, the FBI and Homeland Security, the U.S. Capitol Police intelligence agency, I know that it takes hours and hours and hours to go through all of that footage.
GARZA: I know if I had to go through all of that footage, my eyeballs would pop out. I know they work long shifts. I know they work very, very hard. So I have to give them a pat on the back for that. But at the same time, a lot of us want justice.
For me, personally, I really want to get the ones that were extremely sadistic and the ones that cause the most harm, obviously, yes, everyone needs to be held accountable. The ones that were trespassing, things like that. But the ones that I really we want to get were the ones who brutalized and beat officers, did terrible, terrible things.
Those are the ones that we need to get the most because those are the ones that pose the biggest threat. And as far as the person who planted the pipe bombs, yes, I mean, I know the FBI is working very, very hard on that as well as other law enforcement agencies. I know they're putting their heads together.
I personally and I'm not a law enforcement expert by any means, so I want to make that clear, but I kind of feel like this person is involved with some kind of underground organization. And either they're keeping extremely tightly lipped and all their people are or they're a lone wolf and they've just haven't talked. But they're going to get caught. At some point, they're going to get caught. That's my belief, I have faith in that.
BURNETT: Well, we hope so and all Americans should hope so to have justice for this. Thank you so very much, Sandra.
BURNETT: I appreciate you. And my thoughts are with you today and tomorrow, really tomorrow. Thank you.
GARZA: Thank you so much, Erin. Thank you.
BURNETT: And next, a shocking report tonight on how Republicans across the country are harnessing the power of Trump's election lies even now to run for office and to pass new election laws.
And the parents of tennis superstar Novak Djokovic claim Australia is 'keeping him as a prisoner' after Djokovic was ordered to leave the country because he's not vaccinated.
BURNETT: Tonight, CNN learning that law enforcement officials were aware that, quote, some protesters have indicated they plan to be armed on January 6th. That they were aware of this on December 23rd, nearly two weeks before the deadly riots.
This comes as President Biden is calling out former President Trump for inciting that violence and the Republicans who continue to support Trump's lie.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He's done what no president in American history, the history of this country has ever, ever done. He refused to accept the results of an election and the will of the American people. While some courageous men and women in the Republican Party are standing against it, trying to uphold the principle of that party, too many others are transforming that party into something else. They seem no longer to want to be the party, the party of Lincoln, Eisenhower, Reagan, the Bushes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Sara Murray is OUTFRONT.
RON HANKS (R-CO), U.S. SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: I'm Ron Hanks, and I approve this message.
SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): U.S. Senate hopeful Ron Hanks is shooting at fake Dominion voting machines and calling for an audit in Colorado, a state Joe Biden won in 2020 by more than 13 points.
In liberal Washington state, a local Republican Party is knocking on doors, trying to uncover voter fraud. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're canvassing now in about a dozen counties.
MURRAY: In Crow Wing, Minnesota, a bright red downy in a state that's gone blue since 1976, residents of pressing the board of commissioners for an audit based on false and misleading pretenses.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That log will tell us if that thing went onto the Internet and switched any votes.
MURRAY: And in Alabama, which former President Trump carried by 25 points, Republican Secretary of State John Merrill is still batting back unfounded claims of fraud.
JOHN MERRILL (R), ALABAMA SECRETARY OF STATE: I think a lot of that is people listening to people who have absolutely no idea what they're talking about. It's almost as if they will claim that a murder was committed and yet they cannot prove that the person ever lived, let alone a body or a weapon.
MURRAY: In the year since rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol convinced the 2020 election was stolen, many Republicans are still lapping up Trump's election lies. They're pressuring local officials to revisit 2020. Some are even running for higher office. Others are passing legislation making it easier to meddle in election administration.
JESS MARSDEN, COUNSEL, PROTECT DEMOCRACY: Thirty-two of those bills have become law in 17 states, which is a really unprecedented amount of legislative interest in the mechanics of election administration.
MURRAY: Efforts to undermine confidence in election results began in hotly contested battleground states. But have since ballooned into a nationwide crusade.
In Colorado, election officials like Justin Grantham are aware of Hank's ad.
JUSTIN GRANTHAM, CLERK & RECORDER, FREMONT COUNTY, COLORADO: With this copy machine that he blew up with a rifle, yes, I have seen that.
MURRAY: But State Representative Hanks rebuffed offers to learn about the voting systems firsthand.
GRANTHAM: I've extended offers to come and talk to me about the election and he's not responded and not come in.
MURRAY: Hanks told CNN he appreciates the offers but he did his own research.
HANKS: I didn't really need it. I was at other locations and so that made it rather redundant.
MURRAY: Asked why he's still spreading debunked conspiracies, Hank says nothing has been debunked.
HANKS: I think that is a false argument. We have found evidence and it is compounding daily. MURRAY: Back in Alabama, when Merrill met with election deniers,
including MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, he easily debunked their claims.
MERRILL: The information that they had been sharing with us could have been cleared up by doing a simple Google search of addresses.
MURRAY: Other officials, though, are aiming to appease their constituents.
When CNN asked a Crow Wing commissioner who said he was confident in the county's election for an interview --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I got an email last night. I'm going to read it.
MURRAY: He declined, instead reading her interview request to audit supporters in a county meeting.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sara Murray, CNN News.
MURRAY: This week, he and other members voted to ask Minnesota secretary of state to launch an audit.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Motion passes.
MURRAY (on camera): Now, democracy advocates are already worrying that this drumbeat of disinformation could pave the way for more violence around future elections. Dominion Voting Systems also warned that ads like the one Ron Hanks is running endanger their employees and also their customers, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Sara, thank you very much.
Now, two Republican election official who say stood up for the truth and for the vote count defying the former president and many in their own party because they certified Biden's win as president.
Brad Raffensperger is secretary of state for Georgia, and Bill Gates is the chairman of the Maricopa board of supervisors in Arizona.
Appreciate both of you. And I'm glad to have had the opportunity to speak to each of you so many times. In a sense I'm frustrated because we have to keep talking about this.
Secretary Raffensperger, let me start with you.
Obviously, you saw your colleague there in Alabama who was speaking up for the truth, but so many of these Republicans that he has to refute that you see in other states. Colorado as she points out still asking for audits, claiming these falsehoods about the election. You heard one who said the evidence of fraud is compounding daily.
This is more than a year later. What is your reaction when you hear these people saying this stuff
BRAD RAFFENSPERGER (R), GEORGIA SECRETARY OF STATE: Well, I know as it relates to Alabama, Secretary Merrill, now standing secretary of state knows his business. Every allegation that was made I had to write a book to set the record straight.
Every allegation that was made never proved out. It was never supported by the facts. They said thousands of dead people. We founding four, things like that, and that just has continued to this day.
So it's very interesting. Today in Atlanta, Georgia, we had a memorial service for Senator Johnny Isakson, and that's principled leadership. It was uplifting, it was bipartisan.
And people came together and they recognized that's a man that really led with principled leadership. That's what the high calling I think all of us that hold elected office should be driving to striving to do, to be the next Johnny Isakson, it was a tremendous service for a tremendous man.
BURNETT: Bill, you talk about Secretary Raffensperger, Secretary Merrill, you all have gone through the facts, right? So, today, or last night, I know you and your colleagues in Maricopa County, you completed and presented a 93-page rebuttal to the Cyber Ninja claims of fraud in 2020 election in Arizona, right? So, you went through it point by point by point, 93 pages.
And you're doing it in the context of a new "Washington Post" poll that show 62 percent of Republicans say there is evidence of widespread fraud in the 2020 election, which is identical -- it's down 3 percentage points, so not quite, but basically identical. To the number of Republicans who said that one week after the attack on the Capitol.
So, look, Secretary Raffensperger has written a book. You have put out a 93-page report.
Do you think anything will break through to people who believe this stuff?
BILL GATES (R), CHAIRMAN, MARICOPA COUNTTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS: Well, Erin, you know, it's not easy. But the reality is we have to present the facts. And we were doing this 93-page report in response to what the cyber ninjas said. And they put out so much misinformation, so many allegations that had no basis in fact, that we had to respond point by point. And there are some people who won't listen to what we have to say.
But for those people who do have an open mind, it's so important that we get the facts out there not only for the 2022 election and hopefully, you know, getting people to have that faith again in our election system, but it's also for history. We have to set the record straight and defend these good election workers that ran a great election in 2020.
BURNETT: Yeah. Well, that is the important thing, that history needs to have the facts at hand instead of innuendo.
So, Secretary, former President Obama put out a statement today and his quote was, the truth is that our democracy is at greater risk today than it was back then, referring to January 6th a year ago.
Do you see it that way, secretary? Do you have those concerns?
RAFFENSPERGER: I have some concerns, but also I understand that there's a lot of good people that hold elected office that are principled leaders. So that's really what you need to look at. How do we really help people like that get elected and then also encourage them to stand firm on the truth. And that's what I've done.
I know that my party was very disappointed in the results. I get that. But that's why we checked out every single allegation and reviewed every single allegation and falsehood that was made.
But I think that we're going through a very stressful time, and I understand that. But I'll continue to stand on the truth. There's other principled leaders that are doing the same and I'm very grateful for having Mr. Gates on here.
They have done a good job. They stood hard on the truth to make sure people knew what the facts were and that's what we need to do up and down the line.
BURNETT: So, Bill, you know, Liz Cheney is obviously one of those leaders. And today, her father, the former vice president, was asked about the current Republican leadership's handling on the anniversary of the attack. No Republican House members other than Liz Cheney showed up today, none. Many members put out statements and tweets denying the horrors of the day.
So the former vice president said, Bill, it's not leadership that resembles any of the folks I knew when I was here for ten years.
Bill, what do you make of Republican leadership in Washington right now?
GATES: Well, it's disappointing to see that people aren't willing to say the truth.
We've really seen almost a rewriting of the history of January 6th. And that's not what we should be doing right now. We should be thinking about what we saw, what we remember, you know, and be honest with people and stand as Republicans for the truth, and then move forward from 2020 and instead start to talk about the positive vision that we have as Republicans for this country.
BURNETT: Secretary, before we go, obviously we all know the infamous phone call you had with President Trump where he asked you to find one more vote and said 10,000 dead people voted which you refuted point by point.
Today, he put out a statement, the former president, and he said: To watch Biden speaking is hurtful to many people. And he went on and said, where did all those votes show up in Georgia where it was just revealed they sold votes for $10 apiece?
This is today, Secretary. Today, he's leveling this.
What do you say to him?
RAFFENSPERGER: Well, that relates to a potential investigation we have going on about ballot harvesting. But no one is denying those were not legal votes, but they were doing illegal activities if they're harvesting the ballots.
But that's an ongoing investigation. And people jump to conclusions all the time. Let the investigators do their work. Let us find out our subpoena powers to find this person who said they were paid to do this and we'll get into the details of that.
At the end of the day, every allegation that's been made so far has never panned out. I wrote a letter to Congress. Congress has had my letter for one year and never refuted a single point that I had in my letter.
BURNETT: And you've refuted every single allegation of fraud and, of course, nothing has changed the result of the election in either of your states. Thank you both so very much.
RAFFENSPERGER: Thank you.
GATES: Thank you.
BURNETT: And next, we're going to head to Capitol Hill. My colleague Jake Tapper is standing by with a look at his special tonight.
And tennis champ Rafael Nadal calling out his rival, Novak Djokovic, after the number one player's visa was revoked because he won't get a vaccine.
BURNETT: And we are just moments away from CNN's special live from the Capitol, "January 6, One Year Later," providing extraordinary access inside the Capitol tonight, broadcasting live from Statuary Hall where President Biden marked the one-year anniversary of the insurrection today.
The two-hour special will feature conversations with key lawmakers and law enforcement officials who were there that day.
Jake Tapper is at the Capitol. Jake, you know, it's all taking place in the same location that rioters marched through last year. You know, those moments that we all sat stunned at what we were watching.
What can we expect to see tonight? JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR AND CHIEF WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Well,
we're going to be doing a lot of reflecting with the police officers that protected this building and with the leaders of the commission, Liz Cheney and Bennie Thompson, the committee that's investigating what happened leading up to the attack on the Capitol.
We'll be talking to staffers and getting a tour. Look, there's so much history. We're in the Statuary Hall, as you noted, where earlier today President Biden delivered his address. This used to be where the House of Representatives met. In fact there are little plaques on the floor showing where the desks were for members of the House who went on to become president. Millard Fillmore over there and John Quincy Adams over there and others.
But it's also very much, you know, the scene of a crime. It's a crime scene here, which is regrettable, because it is such a beautiful and historic place. Every state gets to give two statues to the House of Representatives, and you see a bunch of them here. There's Chief Standing Bull, the Native American civil rights leader standing over there and there's -- Chief Standing Bear, I'm sorry, Chief Standing Bear, a Native American civil rights leader and there are other leaders here as well.
Rosa Parks, and there's a famous Frances O. Willard behind me, a suffragist. She also led the temperance movement, which I know you're big on, Erin.
So, I mean, there's so much history here but it's very much like the pictures are in our head, right? The images of the insurrectionists coming through here, defiling it, destroying it, all in service to this big lie.
BURNETT: It is incredible. But that history, it's so powerful. Jake, I think that reference to Statuary Hall, they were there. It is pretty stunning and I can't wait obviously we're just a few moments away and we'll see Jake and Anderson then.
So, thanks so much, Jake. See you in a few.
TAPPER: Thank you, Erin.
BURNETT: Next, it's tennis champs Rafael Nadal versus Novak Djokovic. This is not a story actually about tennis, this is a story about vaccines.
Plus, the stand-off over returning to school. Chicago making a decision about tomorrow. Hundreds of thousands of kids, are they going to be able to go back to school?
BURNETT: Tonight, men's tennis superstar Novak Djokovic reportedly being held in an immigration detention hotel in Australia. He is awaiting a court ruling on whether he can compete in the Australian without being vaccinated.
Officials in Australia cancelled his visa last night, saying, too bad. Rules are rules. The visa doesn't allow you to enter the country unvaccinated for any reason. It's an incredible imbroglio.
Phil Black is OUTFRONT.
PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): At a rally in Serbia's capital, a huge crowd joined Novak Djokovic's family demanding freedom for a national hero.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): They're holding him captive. Our Novak, our pride. Novak is Serbia and Serbia is Novak.
BLACK: Her mother's emotions are more personal.
DIJANA DJOKOVIC, NOVAK DJOKOVIC'S MOTHER: Terrible. Since yesterday, the last 24 hours, they are keeping him as a prisoner. It's just not fair, it's not human.
BLACK: This is the building in Melbourne, Australia, where Djokovic is now reportedly confined, a hotel recently used to quarantine return travelers now housing asylum seekers and the world's number one tennis player.
DJOKOVIC: It's terrible conditions. It's just some small immigration hotel, if it's a hotel at all, with some box. It's so dirty and the food is so terrible.
BLACK: Outside that hotel, Melbourne's Serbian community is rallying too, furious at Djokovic's treatment.
There is less concern for Djokovic from one of his greatest rivals, the sixth ranked Rafael Nadal.
RAFAEL NADAL, TENNIS PLAYER: If he wanted, he will be playing here in Australia without a problem. He went through another -- he makes his own decisions and everybody is free to take their own decisions, but then there are some consequences.
BLACK: The consequences in this case could alter the future of world class tennis. Spain's Nadal, Djokovic and the Swiss player Roger Federer have each won 20 grand slam tournaments. Federer isn't playing in the Australian Open. So, if Djokovic is deported, that would leave Nadal with an easier run to potentially win his 21st title, statistically becoming the greatest of all time.
Nadal, unlike Djokovic, is open and proud of his vaccination status.
NADAL: I believe in what the people who knows about medicine says, and the people say that we need to get vaccinated, we need to get the vaccine. That's my point of view.
BLACK: This picture shows Djokovic at Melbourne Airport's passport control shortly after his arrival, trying, and ultimately failing, to convince border officials he should be allowed into the country.
His lawyers will argue the case again before a Melbourne court on Monday.
But even if they're successful, there is little chance of calming Australia's public and political outrage.
BARNABY JOYCE, AUSTRALIAN DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER: Sometimes, I get a sense that people who make a lot of money start believing they've evolved somehow above the laws of the land whether you like them or not.
BLACK: Phil Black, CNN, London.
BURNETT: And next breaking news, Chicago just making a decision on school tomorrow.
BURNETT: Breaking bad news from Chicago. Public schools have just told parents that classes will be canceled again on Friday. The district and Chicago teachers union failed to reach an agreement again tonight. Three hundred and forty thousand students are now caught in the middle on this.
The former mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, made a point, said, you know, before the coronavirus pandemic, 40 percent of kids in Chicago failed to meet basic proficiency standards and math and reading.
Now that number is 80 percent, that number is now 80 percent, and guess what, those kids are still being denied the chance to go to school in person when medical experts say it is safe and important for them to do so. It's a tragedy. It's not acceptable.
Thanks for joining us.
Our coverage continues now with Anderson Cooper and Jake Tapper live from the Capitol.