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Erin Burnett Outfront
Police Body Cam Video Shows Trump DOJ Official Jeffrey Clark Answering Door in Boxers and Dress Shirt During House Raid; Trump White House Counsel Hours Away from Testifying Before Jan 6 Panel; Father of Gunman Who Confessed to Parade Massacre Speaks Out; Griner's Lawyers Hope for Leniency after WNBA Star Pleads Guilty; Head of IRS Calls for IG Investigation Into Rare Tax Audits of Trump Critics and former Top FBI Officials Comey, McCabe; Biden Faces Growing Pressure to Act After Roe V. Wade Reversal; British Prime Minister Johnson Stepping Down After Scandals, Lies, Mutiny From Own Party Bring Him Down. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired July 07, 2022 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, new body cam video of a raid on a Trump ally, part of the DOJ's investigation into Trump's attempts to overturn the election, as the January 6 committee is about to hear from a crucial witness tomorrow.
Plus, the father of the Fourth of July shooter defending his son's purchase of guns and defending his role in helping his son get those firearms. The top prosecutor in the case is OUTFRONT.
And exclusive audio tonight of American captured in Ukraine, confirming that the fellow American that he was captured with is alive right now and in good health.
Let's go OUTFRONT.
Good evening. I'm Erin Burnett.
OUTFRONT tonight, raid on tape. We have new body cam video tonight that we have just obtained of law enforcement executing a search warrant of the home of former Trump Justice Department official Jeffrey Clark. Sources tell CNN that the raid was part of the Justice Department's sweeping investigation into Trump's attempt to overturn the 2020 election.
Here is the moment that Clark opened the door.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
POLICE OFFICER: Hey, Mr. Clark, how are you? Good morning.
JEFFREY CLARK, FORMER TRUMP DOJ OFFICIAL: Yes. Good morning.
POLICE OFFICER: I am with the DOJ OIG. Please turn that off for me.
Can you step outside? We have a search warrant, and we need to speak to you. Can you step outside for me?
JEFFREY CLARK, FORMER TRUMP DOJ OFFICIAL: Can I call my lawyer?
POLICE OFFICER: Yeah. Let's step outside.
POLICE OFFICER: Just real quick. We've got to clear the house, make sure it's safe. Is your wife home?
CLARK: Oh, nobody's home.
POLICE OFFICER: Okay, no one's in there?
POLICE OFFICER: You can absolutely call your lawyer. But you're going to step aside with me real quick.
Gone and step out here.
CLARK: Can I put pants on first?
POLICE OFFICER: Sir, we got to clear the house.
POLICE OFFICER: We're going to clear the house and as soon as we clear the house, we'll get you to talk to your lawyer and we'll get some pants on, okay?
CLARK: Can I open the garage and stand in the garage?
POLICE OFFICER: It's a search warrant.
POLICE OFFICER: It's a search warrant. Please come on right over here.
POLICE OFFICER: Stand behind the cars and we'll see you --
CLARK: There's no reason --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: All right. Well, CNN obtained a copy of police reports which indicated officials seized a number of electronic devices from Clark during that morning raid. Officers also dispatched an electronic sniffing dog to search Clark's house.
The news coming as we're learning the DOJ's investigation appears to be picking up steam. Republican operatives connected to Trump's fake elector scene are set to turn over information as soon as tomorrow. The DOJ has now issued numerous subpoenas in just the past few weeks for information in all seven battleground states where Trump's campaign convened those state electors.
In the meantime, on Capitol Hill, the January 6 committee is ramping up. The Trump White House counselor Pat Cipollone will testify tomorrow before the January 6 committee. He is, of course, a crucial witness. His testimony could be very important and helping the Justice Department when they hear it to determine whether criminal charges should be brought against Trump himself.
Now, the committee knows this. They know that Cipollone is important to their report to the DOJ. And they have repeatedly pressured him to testify.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): We think the American people deserve to hear from Mr. Cipollone, personally.
REP. ADAM KINZINGER (R-IL): We want Pat Cipollone to come in and cooperate in a robust way.
REP. ZOE LOFGREN (D-CA): Obviously, we would like to hear from Mr. Cipollone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Because, as we already heard from a another key witness, Cipollone was in the White House. He was there before, but he was there during the riot. He said a lot during that time. In fact, he said that what was happening was wrong.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CASSIDY HUTCHINSON, FORMER AIDE TO TRUMP WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF MARK MEADOWS: I saw Mr. Cipollone right before I walked out into West Exec that morning, and Mr. Cipollone said something to the effect of, please make sure that we don't go to the Capitol, Cassidy. Keep in touch with me. We are going to get charged with every crime imaginable if we make that movement happen.
Pat said something to the effect of, and very clearly, said this to Mark -- something to the effect of, Mark, something needs to be done, or people are going to die, and the blood is going to be on your f'ing hands.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Well, he was right about those warnings that Cassidy talked about. Trump did not act, and people did die.
Melanie Zanona is OUTFRONT on Capitol Hill.
So, Melanie, what more are you learning about this new video about Mr. Clark, and about what we can expect tomorrow on the committee side of things?
MELANIE ZANONA, CNN CAPITOL HILL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, this new body footage was obtained by our Carla Hanover Benowitz (ph) and it shows the moment that authorities arrived on Jeffrey Clark's doorstep to conduct a search warrant. We also know because of police reports, that that search warrant was conducted in connection to an ongoing fraud investigation. And Clark, of course, is the DOJ environmental lawyer, who Trump had
to install as attorney general, because everyone else in the DOJ wasn't going along with his efforts to overturn the election. So, Jeffrey Clark's name is one we have heard repeatedly throughout the course of the January 6th Select Committee investigation.
Now, another name that we have heard a lot is Pat Cipollone, the former White House counsel. And the Select Committee was able to secure his testimony, which will take the place tomorrow behind closed doors, and this was a really big breakthrough for the committee to get this testimony because Cipollone is considered a key fact witness. He was a firsthand witness to many pivotal episodes, both leading up to and on January 6.
And sources tell CNN that he was in and out of the dining room with Trump during this critical 187 minutes, where Trump refused to act, as rioters were storming the Capitol building. And so, Pat Cipollone can really help fill in the gaps there, which is important because there are missing gaps in the White House records from that day. And we are expecting the Select Committee to focus on those critical, 187 minutes of an action in one of their upcoming hearings.
Now, also, she can also help corroborate Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony, which was explosive. She has been under attack. There are concerns about Pat Cipollone's executive privilege, unclear how the committee will navigate that and limit is corporation to a certain extent. But this will be videotaped, Erin, so I'm sure we will see this in an upcoming hearing.
BURNETT: Yeah, absolutely, they could play it. They can transcribe it. And, you know, as Congresswoman Lofgren said, once they have it, it's theirs to do with it as they will.
Melanie Zanona, thank you so much for your reporting.
And I want to go now to Ty Cobb, because he is a former Trump White House lawyer, a name familiar to everyone watching.
So, Ty, thanks so much. I appreciate your time.
Sop, you did serve as President Trump's lead counsel during the Russia probe by special counsel Robert Mueller. And at the time of the Mueller investigation, you believe that Trump should not, in that case, be charged with any crime. You didn't think an investigation in that case was warranted. In this case, do you think Trump deserves blame for January 6?
TY COBB, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE LAWYER: Well, first of all, Erin, nice to be with you.
Yes. I think that the president certainly deserves some blame for what happened. He charged up the crowd. There have been reports about knowing they were armed, his refusal to take out some incendiary rhetoric, where he urged the crowd to, you know, fight for him on the Hill. I think -- I think, you know, it's certainly justifiable that -- and important that the country look into this and they got the details. But in a word, does the president deserve blame? Yes.
BURNETT: So, Ty, from there then, where do you go? Do you think that the attorney general should charge Trump, if the DOJ finds proof he committed crimes? Do you think they should go ahead with a charge in that case?
COBB: I think two points on that, I would say. One, it depends on the crime. I think there are some process crimes. You know, there's anything from seditious conspiracy to attempting to influence witness. I think the Justice Department is going to have a weighty decision to make about prosecuting a former president.
I think that -- while that's routine, it seems in South America, you know, America has not -- the United States has not -- has not seen that. And it will be a significant policy shift.
BURNETT: I mean, it certainly will be. It's hard to know, right, what will happen and what choice they will make.
I want to show you again, Ty, the new video that we have. This is a video that we just got tonight, showing the moment that officers raided Jeffrey Clark's house. Now, it is not clear right now whether Clark himself is the subject of a criminal investigation, but we do know that the raid, of course, was part of the Justice Department's investigation into the president's efforts to overturn the 2020 election.
So, Ty, from everything that you have seen and heard up to this point, do you believe anyone in Trump's inner circle should be charged?
COBB: I think that, you know, from everything I have seen and heard and, thanks to the good reporting on all of this, that there are some serious facts out there.
The phone calls to Raffensperger and Mr. Bower's concern me greatly. You know, the demand to find 11,470 votes is of concern to me. The efforts in both Arizona and Georgia I think, you know, present difficult choices for the Justice Department.
I also think the facts that are evolving, Ms. Hutchinson testified to, that it sounds like, if true, Pat Cipollone advised the president that there were serious criminal concerns at issue before he took certain actions. I think that is very problematic. I think -- you know, it's -- I'm concerned about the role that Mark Meadows played and certainly the role that certain of his individual counsel played.
BURNETT: So, you talk about Mark Meadows, but, obviously, the call that you were referring to, to Raffensperger about one more vote, that was from Trump himself. And, you know, Cipollone giving the president the information, the president going ahead. That you talk about that concern. That was the president himself.
What else do you need to hear, Ty, to think that the president himself, that a charge would be merited? Again, putting aside whether they choose to do it, whether it would be merited?
COBB: I think that, you know, it would be -- in all these cases, intent is essential, and it would be good to know a little bit more about the president's intent. With regard to Raffensperger's phone call and Bower's phone call, as I recall, Mr. Meadows was on one or more of those calls. I think --
COBB: I think knowing what preparation went into those calls, what they were told, you know, if it is as simple as just do it, which I believe Mr. Bowers was told in Arizona that is highly problematic. I mean, think you've got issues of defrauding the United States, with regard to the vice president's issue and a big lie. You've got obstruct -- potential obstruction and influencing a witness.
And, of course, you got seditious conspiracy, if indeed, they can tie all those pieces together. I think that will be difficult on a sedition, but I do think that there are certainly other criminal activity worthy of investigation.
BURNETT: Ty Cobb, thank you very much. I appreciate your time and your honest assessment. Thank you.
COBB: Thank you.
BURNETT: All right. And next, I didn't do anything wrong, it's a quote. That's a quote from the father of a Fourth of July shooter, as he defends his decision to sponsor his son's application for a gun permit. The top prosecutor in the case is with me.
Plus, Brittney Griner in a chess match with Russia, pleading guilty in Moscow today, hoping that will fend off a long prison sentence there.
And an exclusive update tonight on one of the Americans captured by the Russia in Ukraine. We now know that he is alive, and his fiancee will be OUTFRONT.
BURNETT: Breaking his silence. The father of the Highland Park parade gunman speaking out defending his decision to sponsor his son for a firearm permit.
Robert Crimo Jr. telling "The New York Post" that he believed his son wanted to the guns, quote, go to the shooting range, and, quote, they may make like I groomed him to do all this. I've been here my whole life, and I'm going to stay here, hold my head up high, because I didn't do anything wrong.
He's doubling down on that interview with ABC News where he said that he never saw this coming.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP) ROBERT CRIMO JR., FATHER OF PARADE SHOOTRE: I filled out the consent form to allow my son to process the firearm. They do background checks. Whatever it entails.
This has taken us by complete surprise. Three days before the Fourth, my wife had asked him, Hey, do you have any plans for the Fourth? And he simply said no.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
BURNETT: Of course, they both were aware of his homicidal threats and his multiple suicidal threats in 2019. They reported him to Illinois state police. And this comes as new details continue to emerge in the investigation.
Josh Campbell is OUTFRONT from Highland Park tonight.
And, Josh, I knew you just had a chance to speak with the police chief. What did he tell you?
JOSH CAMPBELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Erin, you know, there has been warning sign after warning sign. Every new piece of information we learn about the shooter just paint a portrait of someone that is so troubled and disturbed. And as you mentioned, there was this past police contact, including there were the times when the shooter had allegedly harmed himself, and harmed other people.
Yet we know that some -- for some reason, his father even asked him that, decided to sponsor to get a firearm which included the gun which was included in the attack. So, a lot of questions for the family.
But I also sat down with the police chief and asked him as well, where there more warning signs here that were possibly missed by law enforcement? Here's that exchange.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHIEF LOU JOGMEN, HIGLAND PARK POLICE: I don't blame anyone for asking that. We ask ourselves, we are our hardest critics on that. We want to make sure that we are getting -- getting it right.
In this particular case, in this particular case, I absolutely believe our officers truly did what was legally offered to them.
We go to homes all the time where these things are happening. We can't just -- you know, they're not corroborating it, or they're saying it's not happening where we can help. We can't just take that person out and put him -- I mean, it just isn't the way the law is set up.
CAMPBELL: And, obviously, the motive is under investigation, right?
JOGMEN: That's the first thing people want to know, that's what we want to know. Why. Why. We'd love to have that reason out there so people can process. But not sure that we're there yet.
(END VIDEO CLIP) CAMPBELL: And, of course, when we cover the story, we obviously hold the police's, you know, feet to the fire whenever there were mistakes, in this case, this was a very high bar for authorities to be able to arrest someone and voluntarily commit them. It requires the family to actually file a complaint.
Here, Erin, it appears, that the family didn't do that.
BURNETT: So, which is all just all horrible when you think about how it all came together.
Now we have this in the context of one of the children who actually survived, survived the massacre in the shooting. Eight year old Cooper Roberts. What is the latest on his condition, Josh?
CAMPBELL: Well, this is so disturbing, Erin. Obviously, we talked about the suspect, but we also have been focused on the human toll. We've been reporting on this 8-year-old Cooper Roberts who was severely injured behind me in the shooting. He had gunshot wounds that including severing his spinal cord.
Erin, we are learning today from his family that he is now paralyzed from the waist down -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Josh Campbell.
And OUTFRONT now, Eric Rinehart, the state attorney for Lake County, Illinois.
And I really appreciate your time, Eric.
I know you heard that the gunman's father said he did nothing wrong by sponsoring that gun a permit for his son. He thought the gun was for shooting range. He told ABC News he doesn't regret sponsoring him. Obviously, you know, he and the family had gone to state police in 2019 because of the homicidal and suicidal threats of his son.
What do you say when he says he has no regrets about what he did?
ERIC RINEHART, STATE ATTORNEY FOR LAKE COUNTY, IL: Well, first, Erin, thank you for having me on the show. We continue to express our condolences. Personally, I want to express my condolences to the families of those who lost their lives, to those who were physically injured, to those who were psychologically scarred by this terrible, terrible, and premeditated attack.
Highland Park will not be the same. Lake County will not be the same. It is heartbreaking for me as a father to hear those additional details about the eight year old. Our office is doing everything we can to support every single victim. It is devastating to hear that. Just as I come on.
As for the father of the defendant, the offender, we are looking at every part of this case. I don't want to get too much into it. He is talking to the media about these things, and we are investigating every part of this case.
We know that these are dangerous weapons. I called for assault weapon ban nationally, and also in Illinois. These are dangerous weapons.
And if Mr. Crimo doesn't think he did anything wrong. I think it was wrong that Mister -- that his son was able to go buy an assault weapon that his father is not going to stop him, even sponsoring. We can't have just one point of protection, right? We have to have several ways of protect the preciousness of life. So, that's how I look at it.
BURNETT: So I know you are looking into that. I mean, some of the details here, we know police did go to the family home, because a family member told police, they reported that he threatened to kill everyone.
Now, the gunman's father told ABC News this was taken out of context. He compared the outburst by a child. But, again, they called state police. State police came to the home. They found 16 knives that the kid had. They took them from the home.
The father downplays that as well and he compared it to a collection of coins or baseball card. I sort of find it hard to say those words, because I'm sort of stunned anyone would even say that. Do you buy any of that?
RINEHART: Yeah, that comparison is pretty hard for me to understand. He is talking about a child's outburst, and yet, a few months later, he is helping him -- helping him obtain firearms. So, it's not as if that was years before he acquired the firearms, it was months before he acquired the firearms.
So, there's a lot of problems -- there are a lot of problems with that. And we are looking at every part of that, there is still a mountain of evidence to go through. This is still an active investigation, but I have a pretty hard time with that sort of justification.
BURNETT: So an attorney for the gunman's father told CNN his parents will continue to speak with law enforcement and to a system. Are you understanding that that's the case? Have they been cooperative so far?
RINEHART: I don't want to characterize the levels of cooperation. I think there have been some statements. There's obviously good statements to the media. And we're going to continue to talk to them about what they do, and about the scope of this attack.
It was clearly premeditated and we need to make sure we understand everything, so I certainly urge them to cooperate. I certainly urge them to give us the information. But we need to look at all of the evidence of the case. Apparently, we have to take some of it with a grain of salt, if he's going to compare that a child outburst in the context of later giving a dangerous weapon.
Eric, thank you very much, I appreciate your time. RINEHART: Thank you very much -- thank you very much, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. And next, hope is riding high on Brittney Griner's guilty plea today in a Russian court. You may say, how are hopes riding high on a guilty plea? Well, it's a strategy. She's hoping that it will help her avoid a ten-year prison sentence.
And rare tax audits of two big Trump critics coming into investigation. A watchdog now being asked to investigate the so-called random scrutiny by the IRS.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDREW MCCABE, FORMER FBI ACTING DIRECTOR: It just defies logic to think that there wasn't some other factor involved here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Tonight, the lawyers for WNBA star Brittney Griner saying it was her decision to plead directly to drug charges in a Russian court.
Griner, who the U.S. State Department classifies as wrongfully detained following her arrest at a Moscow airport in February, officials say they found cannabis oil in her luggage. She faces up to ten years in prison if convicted.
Matthew Chance is OUTFRONT in Moscow.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is Russian justice conducted behind closed doors, just a glimpse of Brittney Griner towering above her guards being led handcuff into the courtroom.
The WNBA star was detained at a Moscow airport in February when Russian custom officials say they found small quantities of cannabis oil in her luggage, an illegal substance under Russian law.
U.S. officials say she's being wrongfully detained, but recordings made inside the court capture the 31-year-old through a translator pleading guilty to the serious drug smuggling charges against her.
BRITTNEY GRINER, WNBA STAR: I would like to express my attitude towards my charges.
JUDGE: Of course.
TRANSLATOR: Yes, please.
GRINER: I would like to plead guilty on the charges. But I had no intention on breaking any Russian laws. CHANCE: But under those laws which carry a maximum 10-year sentence,
the U.S. athlete who told the court she packed in a hurry by mistake could now be made an example of, especially at a time of such strained U.S.-Russian relations.
And this concern the Biden administration should be doing more to help the two-time Olympic gold medalist, who wrote to President Biden earlier this week, expressing concern she could be detained forever and pleading for her and other U.S. detainees not to be forgotten.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Is the White House doing enough to get Brittney Griner home?
VANESSA NYGAARD, HEAD COACH, PHOENIX MERCURY: We had great response with BG's letter to President Biden and Biden responding with a call to BG's wife, Cherelle. We think progress is being made on that front.
The coverage of women's sports and coverage of women athletes is really the concern here. I mean, the question is, would Tom Brady be home? But Tom Brady wouldn't be there, right, because he doesn't have to go to a foreign country to supplement his income from WNBA.
CHANCE: But U.S. officials in Washington and Moscow insist they're doing everything they can.
ELIZABETH ROOD, DEPUTY CHIEF OF MISSION, U.S. EMBASSY IN MOSCOW: I was able to speak with Ms. Griner in the courtroom. She said that she is eating well. She's able to read books and under the circumstances, she is doing well. Most important, I was able to share with Ms. Griner a letter from President Biden and Ms. Griner was able to read that letter.
CHANCE: It's unclear what was written but U.S. officials already negotiated the release of one U.S. citizen Trevor Reed from a Russian prison earlier this year in a controversial prisoner swap. There is no indication another prisoner swap involving Brittney Griner is imminent, but her Russian lawyers say there are hopeful that a guilty plea, plus a positive contribution to global sport will help this basketball star avoid that most severe sentence.
CHANCE (on camera): Well, a less severe or light sentence in a Russian court is rare, particularly in a trial as political as this one. Having said that, of course, there are plenty of Russians in U.S. jails that the Russians want back to. So, I think what we learned from the Trevor Reed prisoner swap a couple of months ago, even when relations are as tense as they are now between the U.S. and Russia, it is possible for deals to be done -- Erin.
BURNETT: Matthew, thank you very much, from Moscow tonight.
Well, one of those being held by Russia, as we speak, Alex Drueke and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh. The two Americans went missing during a battle 27 days ago. So, 27 days they were missing. They were captured while fighting with Ukrainian forces in north of Kharkiv. And tonight, we have an exclusive update on the health of one of those
two missing Americans. Alex Drueke in a call to his mother revealed this about Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ALEX DRUEKE, AMERICAN CAPTURED IN UKRAINE: I saw him about a week ago, when we did our last set of interviews, he was in good spirits.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
BURNETT: It is the first time that rookie has said anything and been able to confirm that Tai Ngoc Huynh is alive.
OUTFRONT now is Joy Black, Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh's fiancee.
And, Joy, I'm so glad to have you back under these circumstances. What did you think when you heard the update?
JOY BLACK, FIANCEE OF ANDY TAI NGOC HUYNH, AMERICAN MISSING IN UKRAINE: Well, first of all, thank you for having me, I appreciate the opportunity. When I heard the audio clip, it was good to hear what he said. I really hope that I am under any kind of duress or anything, that he meant it.
We are really glad that Andy and Alex got to see each other, because I know they have been worried about each other. I am really hoping that the Red Cross can get into see Andy and Alex I think really confirm Alex said about Andy.
BURNETT: Right. No, I know, you know, it's like, you want to have that hope. Obviously, you are still so afraid, you don't know the situation.
I do want to play, Joy, a little bit more from the call that Alex had with his mother. So everyone understands, this call took place this week, but two nights ago, here it is.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
ALEX: He seems to be doing well. He hasn't had chance to speak to family, so I'm trying to pass the word as best I can to maybe find a way to let him call home, but we'll see.
BUNNY: Yes, not just the family, but the U.S. government is very concerned that Andy had not been able to call the State Department or to call his family.
They are very concerned, they want whoever is holding you all to let Andy call home, call the State Department or both.
ALEX: Okay, I mean, I -- I ask what I can and from what I've seen, he is a good health.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
BURNETT: Joy, I know you have not heard from Andy in three weeks. Obviously, Alex's mother has been able to speak with him. How difficult is that, knowing that Alex can speak with a family, the situation is allowing that, and, you know, obviously, you hear the good news, hopefully he is doing well. You still have not been able to speak with Andy.
BLACK: It's definitely been very hard, but I try to look at the positive. I'm very glad Alex gets to reach out. What is good for one is good for both of them. So, it's good to hear from Alex.
It would be really, really nice to hear from Andy. I know the State Department really wants to hear from Andy himself, at least a call to them. Andy would be able to make a call to either me, or just the family in general would be really nice just to hear from him to get some confirmation about him.
BURNETT: Yeah, just to hear his voice. I know you mentioned the State Department, you have a chance to speak with them. What is the very latest that they told you about the situation, Joy?
BLACK: We have had really good communication with the State Department. It is definitely really appreciate that, hearing little crumbs helps with morale, and keeping the hope up. They said a lot has been going on behind the scenes, working on it day and night and they mention upcoming meeting between the U.S. and Ukraine embassies to talk about many things. Andy and Alex are on the agenda for that, so we are definitely hoping for good moves to come out of that. One of the main things he updated is that they really want to hear from Andy.
BURNETT: Yes, of course. You too, Joy, I hope the good news that came via Alex is true and you will have the opportunity so soon. Thank you so much.
BLACK: Thank you.
BURNETT: And OUTFRONT next, growing calls for the IRS commissioner to step down after the revelation that two fierce Trump critics were subjected to rigorous and yet supposedly random IRS audits, why?
Kamau Bell is here asking tough questions about critical race theory and the answers they bring.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KAMAU BELL, CNN HOST: Is it okay if a teacher says I think slavery is bad? Is that okay?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [19;41:39]
BURNETT: Tonight, the head of the IRS calling for an inspector general investigation into rear tax audits for a former top FBI officials James Comey and Andrew McCabe.
There are growing questions about whether President Trump used the IRS as a political weapon against those two, both of whom, of course, were outspoken critics of Trump and the subject of his ire.
Just to put this in perspective, the way the law works in the United States is that the IRS audits are randomly selected, completely and utterly randomly selected. So, the odds of getting one are about one in 30,000, that's according to "The New York Times".
So, now, you have Comey and McCabe, both of the FBI guys getting one? Here is what McCabe said about the news.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANDREW MCCABE, FORMER FBI DEPUTY DIRECTOR: Just defies logic to think that there wasn't some other factor involved here. I think that was a very reasonable question.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: So, Kara Scannell is OUTFRONT tonight.
And, Kara, you've been reporting on this. As one former IRS commissioner said, lightning doesn't strike twice in the same place.
So, what more are you learning about these audits and the inspector general investigation?
KARA SCANNELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Erin, we learned that the IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig, a Trump appointee, personally reached out to the inspector general and made this referral yesterday after they were contacted by "The New York Times" with these details about this unusual audit into these two figures who are critics of Trump, and Trump was very critical of.
So, the inspector general's office has not returned our request for comment, but as you said these are computer generated audits the one thing the inspector general is looking into is whether in fact they were randomly selected. They'll talk to the auditors on the committee, they will talk to the supervisors, they will look to see if there is any other communications, any suggestion that someone interfere in this.
Now, this investigation already has a bipartisan support in Congress by some manners, the Democratic chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, and the rankling Republican, both came out with statement saying that they support this investigation, they want to get to the bottom of whether there was political targeting.
The IRS, of course, doubling down saying that these audits are conducted by career civil servants, it would be ludicrous to suggest any senior IRS officials interfered and selected who would be subject to this audit -- Erin.
BURNETT: So, Kara, where does this go from here? I mean, obviously, you got this now investigation in progress, but there are already calls for the IRS commissioner to step down as a result of this.
So, what can you tell us about him? And what really is the truth about his relationship with Donald Trump?
SCANNELL: Well, Rettig was appointed in 2018 by Trump, and he was part of the Treasury Department when they agreed to shield the former president from turning his tax returns over to the House Ways and Means Committee. That is still in litigation, he has been serving continuously under the Biden administration.
People viewed him as being a little bit of an ally of the Bidens, thwarting out their agenda. But now, there are questions about whether he will stay.
The White House press secretary was asked if the president has confidence in him. She says, he is going to be up in November, so I will leave it there -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Kara, thank you very much.
And, next, and I quote, it's time to wake up. That is a quote from someone who advises the White House, who's calling for more drastic action after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
And the tumultuous and controversial career of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, forced to resign after mutiny by his own party.
BURNETT: Tonight, growing pressure from Democrats and Biden advisers to do something dramatic in the wake of the reversal of Roe v. Wade. Longtime Democratic strategist and director of Demand Justice, Brian Fallon, telling "Politico", quote, why does Joe Biden consider it his job to keep the public confidence in court that is completely working to thwart his agenda?
And Harvard law professor, Laurence Tribe, who is also advised the Biden administration, says and I quote him, his admiration for the court as an institution has been overtaken by reality, and I think it's time to wake up.
OUTFRONT now, W. Kamau Bell, host of CNN's "UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA" and coauthor of the new book, 'Do the Work", and anti-racist activity book, which comes out on July 19th.
So, Kamau, thanks so much, you know, for taking the time. I want to talk first about abortion, because you've been talking about since Roe is overturned. You've been calling for action. Do you think President Biden is meeting the gravity of the moment in
this decision to uphold the sort of broader institution of the Supreme Court?
BELL: No, I don't think he is at all. I am lucky over "UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA" to meet a lot of great people and we did an episode with Mississippi, the last abortion clinic in Mississippi.
And we not only talk to people working that the clinic and activists on the ground in Mississippi who told us years ago that Roe versus Wade was going to be overturned, and how that would impact Black and Brown women mostly, overall, proportionately. I think that they knew this was coming, and those people are suffering now because of that. So, there's many things Biden could do to stand up to this.
I mean, I've heard he could open abortion clinics on federal land. The country supports a person's right to choose, a pregnant person's right to choose and Biden could be doing more instead of waiting.
BURNETT: So, a new Monmouth poll come out and I just want to bring in this context. It shows that -- you ask me, what is your biggest concern right now? The top four, every single one of them, the economy, inflation, gas prices, every day bills, that adds to, you know, you are looking up to 80 percent of the biggest concern facing the country's economic base. Then you get to abortion, and that's 5 percent.
So, is Biden, do you think, Kamau, just doing the political math and saying, well, look, this is only the top issue for 5 percent of people, so my time is best spent elsewhere?
BELL: I mean, I would hate to think that he is that cynical, but maybe you have a good point. I think the idea that you would do political math when America feels like it's literally at stake, the future of America is at stake right now. If we look around the world, around the country and everything going on, if you do political math at a time where we need you to be heroic and step into the fight, that would not be the kind of leader I think we will want leading this country. It feels very cynical to me.
BURNETT: I mean, yeah.
All right. So, your new season of "UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA" premiers this weekend. And in your first episode, this is -- this is amazing, I can't wait to play it -- this is people in Arizona that you spoke to about critical race theory and how American history is taught in schools. And here is a clip of how one of your conversations went.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BELL: Critical race theory, what are your thoughts on that?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't have it to our opinion.
BELL: Is it okay for teachers to say, I think slavery was bad, is that okay?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
What if they goes, Nazis not good?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Nothing is bad.
BELL: Nothing is bad?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is total manipulation and manufacturing a crisis.
BELL: Who is manufacturing it?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The Democrats, it's always a race card. Like I am so sick of it.
We need to teach children to compete when the Chinese probably know more about American history than we do.
BELL: We should teach better American history here?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, yeah.
BELL: History of America?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: History of America.
BELL: Slavery, genocide of Native Americans?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, no.
BELL: But that's enough?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, not a whole thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: All right. Kamau, is it okay that teachers said slavery is bad, is that okay? Woman one, no, woman two, no, woman three, no. OK.
I mean, Kamau, this is amazing, what did you -- what did you learn, I guess, as you had these conversations?
BELL: That there are forces at work in the country that are very good at distracting people for what they should actually be carrying about, and that they often use destruction, the fear of Black people overthrowing the country or the fear of Black people having some sort of secret plan, and they came through Black slaying, which is woke, and critical race theory, which is a policy that was submitted by Black academics, namely, Kimberly Crenshaw, who's on the show. And that if you -- and that there are forces at work who are good at taking those things and saying that they're coming to take your country back, which automatically says, it is not my country. So, I think that is what I learned. Those forces are doing the work to overturn the country, which is why me and my friend wrote a book called, "Do the Work". We on our side had to start doing the work, too. We can't sit back and hope it works out.
BURNETT: All right. Kamau, thank you very much. I hope everyone will watch the full show, for the first episode, right, "UNITED SHADES OF AMERICA". It is Sunday at 10:00. Thanks so much.
And next, scandals and lies are only part of what brought down British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. His party giving him no choice but to resign.
BURNETT: Tonight, growing calls for British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to step aside immediately, instead of staying in office until a successor has been named. Johnson announcing his resignation today amid what was frankly a party revolt. It was a dramatic ending to a very dramatic and controversial tenure.
Max Foster is OUTFRONT from London.
MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A tumultuous tenure. Boris Johnson's career was built on an every man informality, but defined by serious crises.
He began his path like so many of his predecessors at the country's most elite schools. He cut his teeth as a journalist. But he would truly enter public life in 2001 as a member of parliament, and in 2008, as London's mayor. He governed as a relative moderate, and an affable figure, famous for his hijinx during the 2012 Olympic Games.
But it was his campaign about whether Britain should leave the European Union that would fuel his path to Downing Street.
DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: He's going to be a fantastic prime minister. I can tell you.
FOSTER: Refer to as Britain's Trump by the former U.S. president by the former U.S. president. The two became allies, making parallels between them hard to escape.
But Donald Trump was less happy when Boris Johnson was caught on camera appearing to mock Trump with his fellow leaders during the NATO summit in 2019.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He is not good looking like us three.
FOSTER: A moment later parodied on "Saturday Night Live".
Johnson tried to maintain his comedic character throughout his leadership. 2019 was meant to be a year for realizing his Brexit vision. Then came coronavirus. From the start, he was accused of not taking the virus seriously enough.
BORIS JOHNSON, UK PRIME MINISTER: I was at a hospital the other night where there are a few coronavirus patients. And I shook hands with everybody.
FOSTER: Then the gravity of the pandemic hit home.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: We learned moments ago that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has tested positive for coronavirus.
FOSTER: Soon, he was moved to the hospital and then intensive care. It was only weeks later that he returned home to 10 Downing Street.
JOHNSON: In particular, two nurses, who stood by my bedside for 48 hours, when things could've gone either way.
FOSTER: But his brush with that only removed the spotlight on his government's pandemic response for so long. Allegations of multiple parties held inside Downing Street and by government aides during strict COVID restrictions the previous year emerged, including an illegal birthday party for Johnson himself in June 2020.
And yet another crisis surfaced, leading to mass government resignations. As Johnson and his office were held to account, over handling of allegations over sexual misconduct by a member of government.
He now leaves Downing Street with the legacy defined by COVID-19 and his response, mired in a series of scandals.
JOHNSON: Thank you all very much.
FOSTER: Max Foster, CNN, London.
BURNETT: Thanks so much to you, Max.
And thanks to all of you, for joining us.
"AC360" with Anderson starts now.