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Erin Burnett Outfront

Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Trump's Immunity Claim; Illinois Judge Removes Trump From Ballot Due To "Insurrectionist Ban"; Trump's Attorneys Admit He Doesn't Have Full $454 Million: "Impossible"; Biden's Doctor: Physical Shows He Is "Fit For Duty"; Putin Touts Nukes Amid Report On Criteria That Would Trigger Use. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired February 28, 2024 - 19:00   ET




We are following several breaking stories this hour. The Supreme Court agrees to weigh in on whether Trump is immune from criminal charges related to January 6. It's the heart of Trump's defense. Is the DOJ's case now in trouble?

Also breaking right now, Trump on the hook for $454 million. The clock is ticking because a New York court has just ruled that he cannot get out of putting up the full amount. And Trump is saying he does not have the money. We'll give all you the details.

And inside Putin's decision to use nuclear weapons. "The Financial Times" tonight obtaining secret Russia intelligence documents showing Putin could resort to using nukes just to stop, quote, aggression. It is a stunning report. The reporter who broke it will be OUTFRONT.

So, let's go OUTFRONT.


BURNETT: And good evening. I'm Erin Burnett.

OUTFRONT tonight, the breaking news, the Supreme Court takes up Trump's case. The nation's highest court tonight saying justices will hear Trump's argument that he has absolute immunity for crimes he allegedly committed in office.

In the one-page order, just one page, very clear to the point, the court writes that this is the key question that they'll answer. Quote, whether and if so, to what extent does the former president enjoy presidential immunity from criminal prosecution for conduct alleged to involve official acts during his tenure in office.

Look, nothing matters more than this case before the Supreme Court. Now, this is a major decision. This one page is a major decision because the court could have simply said that it would not take up the case, and simply let the lower court decision stand. Something that would have been totally standard in a case where three judges had ruled unanimously and very narrowly that Trump was not immune. But that is not what the Supreme Court has done tonight, and the bottom line of this ruling that they're going to hear the case means delay.

The Supreme Court will not even hear the case until the end of April. And that means if the court rules against Trump and the Justice Department's January 6 case against Trump goes ahead. It will begin later -- it will begin later, and every day matters in the countdown to Election Day, whether they're even as a full trial and a verdict by Election Day.

The immunity claim now before the Supreme Court is at the core and the heart of the Justice Department's case against Trump. Because if Trump is immune from prosecution, from acts committed while he was president, then Jack Smith's case is over done. And Trumps lawyers have argued that he is immune from smiths criminal charges because even if Trump had ordered the military to assassinate a political rival, they say, if he did it while he was president, he couldn't be prosecuted.

Of course, the three judges in the scathing rebuke from the lower court rejected Trump's argument. But now, the Supreme Courts nine justices will have the final say, and how the justices decide could have a profound impact on this election.

Former Trump White House attorney Ty Cobb is standing by.

First, though, I want to go to Evan Perez because he's OUTFRONT live in Washington.

Evan, we just get this one page, many had expected that the court would just not take this up, right, and just let that lower court decision stand. That's not what they've done. What do you know about why? What do you know about how? Obviously, they took their time to make this decision. What do you know?

EVAN PEREZ, CNN SENIOR JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Right. In this order, Erin, they made clear that they're not making any judgments on the merits of the case. But what we know from this is the fact that it takes five justices to grant this stay, which is something that they did.

And that means that there's five justices who at least are trying to help Donald Trump, or at least agreeing to helped buy Donald Trump more time, which is after all, the entire strategy by the Trump campaign, and the legal strategy also by the former president, which is to buy time and to delay both of these trials, both of these federal trials until after the November election.

And so with the fact that the justices took, you know, at least three weeks to make this decision, they could have made this decision and issued this order anytime in the last three weeks, they waited this three weeks and they've decided that they're not going to hear oral arguments, at least for another couple of months, it tells us that the effort by the Justice Department to try to get this case heard as quickly as possible because they said this was in the interests of the public, of the nation for this, for this case to go to trial and for a decision to be rendered, it means that that will not happen, anytime soon. Now, it's not impossible. But what it means is that, you know,

certainly by the analysis of Joan Biskupic, we're looking at a decision from the Supreme Court, perhaps in June. And then, you know, the -- if you can get a trial restarted, the calendar is extremely crowded. By the time Donald Trump becomes presumably the Republican nominee.

We should also note, Erin, that the Supreme Court is also, we're still waiting to hear from them on the 14th Amendment challenge in Colorado, right? The ruling by this Colorado Supreme Court.

So, we widely -- everyone expects that Donald Trump will win that case. So at this point, we should point out also that the Supreme Court had the option, Erin, to hear this case if they wanted to take this up when Jack Smith went to them in December, they decided not to take it up then, but they have now decided that they do want to hear this case.

BURNETT: And that mean -- that putting the beginning timestamp on this of December -- that you're now looking at arguments not being made until April and a decision in June, according to Joan's analysis. That is stunning, six-month delay, if you look at just that the bottom line of it.

All right. Evan, thank you very much. As Evan gets more, we're going to go to him.

I do want to go to Ty Cobb now, former Trump White House lawyer.

Ty, look, they could have said let the lower court ruling stand. It was unanimous. It was three justices. They took three weeks to say that. They're not going to do that. They're actually going to hear this case and decide on the merits. Evan laying out that calendar that they could have made that decision in December.

This puts a possible, you know, decision in June. Is there any way to see this other than as a win for Trump in his delay strategy?

TY COBB, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE LAWYER: Well, I think its I think its certainly favorable to Trump, whether it's a win. I mean, Trump appealed as soon as he could. Now, it's, you know, the issue of would the Supreme Court take it always haunted everybody, and, you know, it was they had to balance two things, the interests that the D.C. Circuit identified and getting that case to trial, and whether the opinion from the D.C. circuit was adequate from the Supreme Court's view on the issues that they've now asked to be briefed.

And I think that -- I think probably the most important signal they gave us as to why they granted cert is in the question presented that you read, is the phrase, to what extent because that's --

BURNETT: Whether and if so, to what extent does a former president enjoy immunity? Yeah.

COBB: Exactly and I think that's where the D.C. Court of Appeals opinion is a little bit light, not because of any error that they made, but that they basically concluded rightfully so that the allegations in the indictment were way outside of wherever the line is and they didn't draw a clear line.

I think its understandable for Supreme Court, for our Supreme Court in a case of first impression involving not A, but deep foundational principle of the Constitution, which is the separation of powers would, would want to take, take a shot at trying to draw that line if they can, before a former president is tried.

However, I'm disappointed. I think would have been possible for them to let that case -- let that opinion stand and we could have gone to trial in advance of the election, which I do think would have been in the interest of the country. But I do think this makes a trial before the election unlikely.

BURNETT: So I guess that's why I wanted to ask you. I mean, it appears to be that that's the bottom line, that if you're not going to have oral arguments to the week of April 22nd, Joan Biskupic was saying that that would mean a possibly a verdict in June. I don't -- I don't know if you agree with that or not, but your bottom line is that that would mean you would not get even if that happened and they rule that he is not immune, you would not have a verdict before Election Day.

COBB: That's -- yeah, that's fine. Well, I mean, so there are some -- there are some -- yes, that's -- that is in essence my view, but there are some variables there. I mean, there is.

So the Justice Department policy that everybody talks about, this so- called 60-day policy.


COBB: It doesn't really apply in this circumstance. That's limited to, you know, issuing indictments and opening investigations. There's nothing about a trial in an already scheduled case.

So, there -- it's conceivable that the case could be set for trial in September, could be set for trial following October, could be set for trial immediately after the election.

But I think that -- I think the likelihood is that it's not going to -- certainly in my view, its not going to go to trial before the election.

BURNETT: And just to be very clear on this, Ty, if they set a date after the election and he wins, he is able to essentially end it before that.


COBB: That's correct. That's correct.

Yeah. No, he will get -- so I mean, he may have to endure the trial actually. I mean, because he can't -- you won't have any powers until January 20. So he could -- he could, he may be forced to endure a trial. I still think that's unlikely if he's -- if he's the nominee and we'll be back up to the Supreme Court on those issues.

You know, when does -- when does the imposition of the criminal process become too great for president to endure as it only after he takes so the office or immediately after he's elected. I think that would -- I think there are issues related to that though. I think would further delay the trial.

BURNETT: All right. Ty, thank you very much. I appreciate it.

COBB: My pleasure, Erin. Take care. Thanks for having me.

BURNETT: All right. Good to see you.

And, Karen Friedman Agnifilo is with me, the former prosecutor who worked with special counsel Jack Smith, and Basil Smikle, Democratic strategist.

So, Karen, you know, you hear Ty going through the analysis of what this appears to mean, that you're not going to get a verdict before Election Day. That's -- that seems to be the calendar here that we're now looking at.

How do you even respond to this and what you see from the Supreme Court?

KAREN FRIEDMAN AGNIFILO, WORKED WITH SPECIAL COUNSEL JACK SMITH: I mean, look, Jack Smith predicted this possibility, which is why he tried to leap frog the D.C. Circuit and go straight to the Supreme Court, if you recall?


AGNIFILO: Yes, exactly. And he said, okay, this is an important issue and timing matters here because if this doesn't go before the election, it might not ever go if Donald Trump wins the presidency because he appoints the new attorney general who could dismiss the case. He will pardon himself and the thousands other -- he will call patriots who have been prosecuted and convicted for January 6. That includes people like Enrique Tarrio and Stewart Rhodes. And the case will go away.

So, in some ways, the Supreme Court knew that, and yet they sent it to the D.C. Circuit and said, no, I want them to opine first. But now what they're saying is either they disagree or they changed their mind. I just don't understand why we had to go through this if we were going to go here to begin with because this really means no trial before the election other than the Manhattan D.A. case, which was has been widely stated, that is the least serious of them all. But now, it's really the only case that will likely go before the election.

BURNETT: That's Alvin Bragg and the hush money payment to Stormy Daniels.

Karen, just a quick follow here to make a point, we won't ever know, right, how the court voted on this. We knew they needed a majority to decide to take the case up. But we have no -- we don't know what they had unanimity. We don't know if it was on -- I don't want to use the word party lines, but on liberal and conservative lines. We're going to not going to know that right?

AGNIFILO: That's correct. We don't know and we won't know.

But at least five people on the court, at least five justices want to hear -- want to hear this case. And the timing though of this is really makes it so that that case will not go before the election. That's I think my opinion and many other people who I've spoken to since this came down literally, I think two hours ago.

BURNETT: Exactly.

So, Basil, have you had time to process that? I mean, does this mean that Democrats have to stop hoping on a trial and a verdict that could eliminate Trump even in the eyes of voters, right? Who have said that a conviction could mean would massively change things up in terms of how they see Trump.

Does this mean that Democrats have to just essentially give that up?

BASIL SMIKLE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, it does change the strategy, right? Because I my concern has always been that as these trials continue, that it was going to be difficult for Democrats. They help voters weed through the legalese. As we continue to talk about what -- what's happening in the court and how close we are getting some kind of -- some kind of verdict or answer about how Trump, if at all, would be held accountable.

So this just continues the timeframe, where is I should say it expands the timeframe in which Democrats is still going to have to continue to talk about what's happening, why Donald Trump is under investigation. By the way, pointing out that all of the folks who heard Adam Schiff say this earlier, that all of the folks who actually stormed the Capitol face justice, or if or a good amount of them have already faced justice. It's the leadership, it's the people who are pulling the strings that have yet to face that justice.

And I think that's an important point that Democrats can need to continue to hammer home. And I'll just make this quick point. I think I was on this very network, Erin, in 2016 when the Comey letter dropped. So I have a very healthy understanding of how important information when it comes out close to election can affect the outcome.


And so, that's -- what's so concerning about this, that as has been said before, we could have had some kind of decision on this a lot earlier if you are concerned that the Supreme Court is being political, this just gave you additional fuel for that concern.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you both very much. I appreciate it.

And next, we do have more breaking news. An Illinois judge has just ruled to remove Trump from the state's ballot. That is a surprise move in the context of all of this, we are live with the latest details on that next.

Plus, today, Hunter Biden just wrapping up his testimony behind closed doors. The president's son grilled for more than six hours, even though Republicans admit that their efforts to impeach President Biden are falling apart.

And Alexei Navalny's wife warning her husband's memorial service could turn violent if Putin tries to stop his supporters from showing up. We're live to Moscow tonight.



BURNETT: All right. More breaking news, an Illinois judge has just ruled that Donald Trump should be kicked off the ballot in the state. The judge there in Illinois writing that Trump is not eligible to be on the ballot because of his actions on January 6. That makes Illinois the third state, along with Colorado and Maine, to use the 14th Amendment's insurrection ban to remove Trump from the ballot.

Of course, that 14th Amendment case in Colorado is in front of the Supreme Court as I speak, waiting for a decision.

Katelyn Polantz is OUTFRONT with more on this breaking news.

And, Katelyn, the thing about Illinois is, we're sitting here and talking about a major decision on immunity from the Supreme Court, an out of left field comes this ruling from Illinois. This is a surprise move. What is the Illinois judge saying?

KATELYN POLANTZ, CNN SENIOR CRIME AND JUSTICE REPORTER: It is. This is about Donald Trump and his ability to be on the ballot as a candidate because of what he did in the 2020 election after that election, and on January 6. This judge in Cook County, Illinois, is writing quite clearly her decision here that the Illinois state board of election shall remove Donald J. Trump from the ballot for the general primary election on March 19th, upcoming in a couple of weeks, or cause any votes cast for him to be suppressed.

Now, there are some things in this decision today that are going to put that on hold initially. But, Erin, it's quite a clear decision and this decision from Illinois, it hops on board of what the Colorado Supreme Court has already done and said that case that now is up at the U.S. Supreme Court where Colorado was that state through the court system, looked at the evidence around January 6, and deemed Donald Trump to be an insurrectionist and someone ineligible to be on the ballot for president. Illinois says exactly this same thing here.

BURNETT: Okay, so now Illinois coming, and as I said, in a surprise move saying this, as this -- the broader question about the 14th Amendments in front of the Supreme Court. So what does this mean for that? What happens next, Katelyn?

POLANTZ: Erin, Donald Trump's team is going to need to move quickly to appeal that is the first thing that's laid out here. They have two days as according to this order to get everything paused, having him removed from the ballot or having votes in the March 19 primary not counted for him? So they got to go to the appeals court in Illinois for two days. The state is going to continue to look at it.

And then so much is at stake at the U.S. Supreme Court. They already are looking at what Colorado did to remove him from on the ballot, how that could also affect the third state that has removed Trump from the ballot, Maine, that wasn't in a judicial proceeding. That was by the people who oversee the elections there.

But the U.S. Supreme Court is ultimately going to have to come down on, is this something that states even can do in their primary elections, and would someone like Donald Trump potentially qualify is the office of the presidency, something that is applicable when you're looking at the insurrectionist clause of the U.S. Constitution.

So, all of that is at stake here in this decision. It's not on hold waiting for the U.S. Supreme Court to rule. So if they take a very long time and the Illinois state courts say, no, he can be removed from the ballot, then that may be it. As far as their primary goes, but there is going to be all eyes on the Supreme Court and what they do and how quickly they do it to, Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Katelyn. I appreciate it.

With all of this breaking developments, I want to go now to Eric Swalwell, Democratic congressman, of course, from the state of California.

Congressman, this decision first here that just came out of Illinois was completely unexpected today. So, now, you've got three states banning Trump from being on the ballot. The Colorado cases in front of the Supreme Court, they have yet to make a decision.

Are you surprised to hear this decision from the judge in Illinois?

REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D-CA): Knowing the facts of the case, Erin, and having been on the floor when Donald Trump incited and aimed the mob that pause the counting of the vote and led to the violence, I'm not surprised that a judge would find that he's disqualified because he committed insurrection, which, of course, the constitution says, if you do that you can't be on the ballot.

Erin, I don't know if your viewers know this, but I was the only member who testified in the Colorado case and I did that a little bit reluctantly, because I'm competitive, and I want to beat Donald Trump, and the idea of MAGA and I want to do that this November, because I think doing that is the best reset we can have for democracy.

But a plain reading of the Constitution suggests that if you've committed direction and it seems pretty clear that he did, that you can't be on the ballot. And so I look forward to our Supreme Court resolving it. And however they decide, I will accept that, and we'll move to November.

BURNETT: So they're going to decide that. And there had been some congressmen and obviously you as being on the Judiciary Committee, as you say, testifying in the Colorado case, attorney yourself, some had thought that they would pair the two decisions, that they would come out and maybe unanimously say that Trump actually should be allowed to be on the ballot and put that to the voters.

Therefore in Colorado, and at the same time, say, you know what, we don't need to hear the immunity case. We're going to let those three judges decision that Trump is not immune from criminal prosecution stand, and we're going to let Jack Smith's case go ahead.

They've not done that, right? They've chosen not to do that. They took three weeks to make a decision in the immunity case, and now they're not hearing oral arguments until April 22nd. It appears very clear on the calendar that were being given that that means that there will not be a verdict in the January 6th case before election day. Have you had a chance to process this?

SWALWELL: Yes. And what this all tells me is that our system, our constitutional rule of law, was not built for a legal terrorists like Donald Trump. He is a professional litigant. He has been a part of thousands of cases and he knows all of the tactics of delay, delay, delay. And, you know, we're just not built, you know, to respond to someone who threatens our Constitution, our democracy, our rule of law. But we have to accept whatever outcome.

But that doesn't mean we're helpless, you know, to try and legislate and make sure in the future, we're more responsive. So if there's an issue around the 14th Amendment and the process in place now.


We should anticipate that someone may come along and try and do this again and put a process that's better and put that process in place.

Adam Schiff, my colleague on the Judiciary Committee -- yeah. Go ahead.

BURNETT: Sorry. That might've been something else that you were hearing, but I do want to ask you something else, Congressman, and that is about where you spent your day today. I mean, there's so many developments here tonight, breaking news.

Hunter Biden, President Biden's son, emerged. He had six hours of testifying behind closed doors, right? He was forced by Republicans to sit for a deposition. This was all part of the Republican led efforts to impeach President Biden. Republicans are now admitting that that effort is not moving forward.

But you were there today. You are behind the closed doors for those six hours. What did you learn?

SWALWELL: Nothing new. In fact, this is the end of the impeachment effort. I saw the time of death today because they have nothing. And I would be surprised that they brought this forward, but don't take that from me, Erin. Take that from someone who was in the room on the Republican side? Darrell Issa described it as a big nothing. And so it's time to fund the government, fund Ukraine, the needs in the Middle East, and take on the issues at the border and what people really care about and what matter.

But there's nothing new here, just a continuation of not accepting Joe Biden as the president and cruelly trying to go after a son.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Congressman Swalwell. I appreciate your time.

SWALWELL: No worries. Thank you.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you.

And next, our breaking news coverage continues. A judge ruling that Trump has to come up with the $454 million from his civil fraud trial. Trump was trying to avoid putting it out. He says he does not have the money. More details on that.

And Biden's doctors tonight have come out and said he had a physical today and that the president is fit for duty. But there was no cognitive test. Why? You'll hear what the White House is saying.



BURNETT: Welcome back.

A lot of breaking developments tonight in the Donald Trump legal cases. A New York appeals court just ruling that Trump must pay the full $454 million to cover the verdict in the Trump Org fraud trial, rejecting an appeal by Trump today to only post $100 million. Trump arguing that it is, quote, impossible to pay the full amount. In fact, Trump's lawyers actually have gone into a court in a court filing and saying that Trump could have to sell some of his properties to come up with the money.

Now, keep in mind that he had said that he had liquid assets that exceed the $454 million. So this would seem to indicate he only had a quarter of what he said he had.

OUTFRONT now, Harry Sandick, former assistant U.S. attorney for the southern district of New York, and Jonathan Greenberg, an investigative journalist for "The Washington Post," who has covered Trump's finances for years and says Trump lied to him when he worked at "Forbes" to get on the "Forbes" 400 lists.

So you are front on the front of all of those allegations of that -- that he made about what he really had.

All right. Glad that both of you with me.

So, Harry, here he is admitting that he doesn't have what he says he had. HARRY SANDICK, FORMER ASSISTANT U.S. ATTORNEY, SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF

NEW YORK: Yeah. He's in -- he's in some real trouble now. What the appeals court did today was to say, look, you're appealing the case. You'll get one day to have your day in court on the appeal. But, in the meantime, you're going to have to comply with parts of the judgment. And one of the parts of the judge said he was going to have to comply with the payment of the $454 million.

BURNETT: Which is standard in the case like this, right, that you would have to do that.

SANDICK: Absolutely. You can either pay it or you can get a bond. And, you know, there are some issues with getting a bond, but you have to essentially put something up. You can't just say to the court, trust me. I'll be good for this money. That's just not how it works for him or for anyone.

BURNETT: Right. So he's being treated just like everybody else.

SANDICK: That's right.

BURNETT: So, Jonathan, you know, I know you're not surprised by the situation, probably the outcome here. We had said he had liquid assets up to $600. Now, he says only 100 million. So looking at the properties that he has and they say they may have to sell them, Doral, Bloomberg values it at $305 million;40 Wall Street, nearly 300; Mar-a- Lago, nearly a quarter billion dollars.

Do you really think, Jonathan, that Trump will be forced to sell any of these properties to come up with the money by the deadline next month? And I will point out, but a sale of a property like any of those in a month is, you know, that -- that is an unprecedented thing.

JONATHAN GREENBERG, INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST, WASHINGTON POST: Yeah, it is a fire sale and it is a fire sale is taking place with interest rates almost tripled what they were three years ago. So a lot of the cash flow that "Forbes" and others have estimated these properties are worth and turning up are based upon an assessment that is probably dated and a cash flow that doesn't exist today.

I do believe that he's going to be forced to come up with money, but my sense is, Erin, is that he is going to push this to -- he's going to make them make him do it. He -- his whole career has been a shell game of avoiding accountability and he is going to -- you know, it's going to be much harder for the courts to sell and sell this property and take longer than him coming in.

So he is not going to cooperate in my view. I do not see him selling the properties and coming up with this. I see him saying, how dare are you make me do this. You know, I'm not that -- I don't -- I don't operate like this. And you can't make me and I'm going to appeal it and you're going to lose and you can't make me. Like a child basically refusing to obey.

BURNETT: Which is -- you know, just to -- Harry, put an exclamation point on that. SANDICK: Yeah.

BURNETT: That's incredible to hear, right? Because this, this exactly as Jonathan is describing it, like a child, but this is reality. This is a court. This is the rule of law. This is how it works in this country.



BURNETT: Is it possible that he can just be like, oh, well, it just doesn't apply to me, like me?

SANDICK: I don't think that'll happen.

One of three things I think will happen. One of them is what we were just discussing. He'll say, I'm not going to post the bond in which case the attorney general will have to start a series of lawsuits to essentially collect on the judgment by taking his properties, but that takes time, and it takes --

BURNETT: That takes a leg.

SANDICK: -- effort. If you're the attorney general, that's not really what you want to do. You would rather him post the bond with a normal -- the way any normal corporation or person would. But the ban companies may not want to do that. They may view him as a credit risk.

BURNETT: Wow. So, so then what happens?

SANDICK: Well, either he gets a bond or he pays the money himself, or the attorney general will levy against his property.

The other possibility is there could be some mall delay, either from a court or the attorney general at that one, that delay won't take him to the end of the appeal, which could be months away.

BURNETT: All right. So he plays the delay, the delay game here.

Jonathan, you know what's interesting. You talk about Trump's net worth and how he -- you say lied to you about it over the years, he actually called you in the famous John Barron call, right, when he falsely claimed that Donald Trump own all of his father's assets. He was trying to inflate his net worth to make the Forbes 400 lists. So that's the context of this conversation that you had.

So this guy, John Baron, calls you. Let me play it.


GREENBERG: What's your first name, by the way?


Most of the assets have been consolidated to Mr. Trump, you know, because you have down Fred Trump, and I'd like to talk to you off the record if I can, just make your thing easier.

I think you can really use Donald Trump now and you can just consolidate. I think last years, somebody showed me the article and I think he had 200 and 200, and other's been pretty well consolidated now for the most part.


BURNETT: Two hundred and 200 is 400. So -- I mean, we know everyone who would know that's his voice as well before A.I. So you knew it was him, you knew that it was -- this was pretending to be somebody else.

GREENBERG: I did not know it was him. I did not know it's him. No one has ever tried this before. Nobody else ever gained us. No one would pose as their PR person suggesting they're going to tell you what the truth was about their the relationship between them and who -- in fact, Trump didn't have any of his father's assets until 12 years later when his father died.

I mean, he literally had zero. He was worth less than $10 million when we put him up there at $400 million. He is -- he is -- he -- and I also want to say in 1989, he sent a letter to Forbes that I thought was really interesting and trying to inflate his net worth before he went bankrupt, when he was actually bankrupt, saying he had $700 million in marketable securities.

That's very similar to the 400 million that he told the court in his deposition or $600 million, he claimed to have right now or believed he had. In that case, that was money that flowed through his account for one week to finance in junk bonds, the Taj Mahal Hotel.

So he had an accountant literally write a letter about the money that was there that one week, even though it was never there again. And so I think the $400 million everyone says, well, wait, I thought he had $400 million. He never had it to begin with. It was working capital for loans and stuff and fiction.

But I do want to say that I do think Letitia James and the New York state court will take his hundred million dollars in cash. The first thing they will do is take all the liquid assets. And because this is in receivership right now and carefully, he's not going to be able to funnel out. So they'll get that hundred million first, and that will be the beginning of the other guy.

Just wanted to say, its going to take time to collect and it's going to tremendous ego, you know, collapse because he is probably not a billionaire and he's been avoiding the transparency around his fraud until now. And this will likely bring that about.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you both very much. I appreciate it, Jonathan, Harry.

And next, we now have the results of President Biden's physical today, just coming out and his doctor saying Biden is healthy, active, robust, and fit for duty. But there is something that stands out to Dr. Reiner. He'll be next. Plus, leaked Russian intelligence documents reveal Putin can resort to

using a nuclear weapon, just to make his navy, quote, more effective. The reporter who broke this story will be OUTFRONT.



BURNETT: And we've got more breaking news tonight. This is just the kind of night it is.

The White House releasing, just now, the results of President Biden's physical exam. Now, the president's doctor wrote in a report that Biden is, quote, healthy, active, robust, and continued to say that he is, quote, fit for duty, noting that the president's gait remained stiff -- again here I'm quoting -- but has not worsened since last year. Blaming that stiffness on, quote, degenerative wear and tear of his spine.

Now, all of that is very clear, black and white and very clear, but one thing that was not in the report was a cognitive test. The White House says the doctor decided Biden did not need one.

OUTFRONT now, Dr. Jonathan Reiner, CNN medical analyst, who advised the White House medical team under President George W. Bush.

So, you know, you've been in these situations before of how to handle this information, these physicals on their release, you've looked at this report by the president's longtime doctor, a doctor by the name of Kevin O'Connor. I know you know him well.

What stands out to you, Dr. Reiner?

DR. JONATHAN REINER, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: Well, first of all, it's an incredibly comprehensive report. It involved about ten consultants. It's the kind of massive evaluation that the White House has really good at doing.


And overall, it speaks to the stability of the president, you know, compared to his evaluation last year. The one change is that he now is being treated for sleep apnea very common disorder. A lot of people know somebody who uses a machine at night to provide the sort of positive airway pressure to keep you basically from waking up multiple times during the night and Dr. O'Connor reported that the president is now using that.

But, obviously, you know, the, the one element that is not in the report is sort of the much discussed cognitive exam. But, you know, I've known Kevin, Dr. O'Connor for over 15 years and before he came to the White House, he was a Delta Force Army doctor. And he cannot be bullied.

And I know Kevin and if he doesn't feel like a cognitive exam is warranted, doesn't matter how many people yell in his ear. He will not -- he will not do that.

The converse is also true. If he -- if he felt that a cognitive exam was warranted, no number of political consultants screaming at him would dissuade him from doing it. So, my strong suspicion is that he did not perform a cognitive exam because he did not believe the president needed it.

BURNETT: Which is exactly what they said.

REINER: Right, yeah.

BURNETT: I mean, so -- so, you know, you got ABC poll saying 86 percent of voters say he's too old to serve another term. Obviously, when you read through what was put out by this doctor, you know, it doesn't support that, I mean, right. I mean, even with the gait, acknowledging, yes, it's stiff, but it's not more stiff than it has been and given a reason for it, right?

And you are making it clear that you, you know, believe and trust this doctor when he says he didn't need a cognitive exam.

So, you know, do you think they should have just done one because of the political environment?

REINER: Right. So, there's a medical reason to do -- to do an exam, and there's a political reason. You know, the president's physician doesn't see him, you know, twice a year like I see a patient. He sees them every single day. He position -- he positions himself every morning in a way that he can walk with the president and talked him for a few minutes. So that gives him a very sort of continuous evaluation of the president.

And Dr. O'Conner apparently felt there was absolutely no indication either -- either his own observation or that up from the president. But the other reason to do a cognitive exam, which has nothing to do with medicine, is political.

BURNETT: Yeah. And, maybe I would have done that just to quell the shouting and to, basically, just take that off the table. But Kevin again is sticking to the medicine. So he didn't do it.

I'm not sure I would have necessarily follow that path, but I respect him for sticking to his guns.

BURNETT: All right. Well, Dr. Reiner, I appreciate your time. Thank you. It's great to see you.

REINER: Thank you, Erin.

BURNETT: And next, leaked classified documents coming from Russia. These are leaked documents and they tonight reveal what gives Putin be okay to use a new nuclear weapon, and the reasons are chilling. The bars a lot lower than people thought. A reporter who broke the story is next.

Plus, Alexei Navalny's wife with a message for Putin tonight. Let her husband's supporters pay their respects or risk violence. We're in Moscow, next.



BURNETT: Tonight, leaked Russian military files show just how quickly Putin would resort to using tactical nuclear weapons. "The Financial Times" has obtained highly secretive classified Russian intelligence showing Putin's eagerness to use nuclear weapon even over non- essential matters. The documents show that Russia would use the devastating weapons simply to stop, quote, aggression, as Russia defines it.

OUTFRONT now, the reporter who broke the story, Max Seddon, the Moscow bureau chief for "The Financial Times".

And, Max, I'm really glad to see you again. Look, it's an alarming report, and you've seen these documents.

So what more can you share about Putin's threshold to use a tactical nuclear weapon

MAX SEDDON, MOSCOW BUREAU CHIEF, FINANCIAL TIMES: Well, so, the way that Russia that defines the criteria which it might use nuclear weapons, that's either in response to being doing targeted or if the existence of the state is at threat and they've never really said what that means. And what you see from these documents that the we managed to look at is really that is terrifyingly low it.

So basically if Russia doesn't feel that they've won the first stage of any sort of conflict with major power, then they might use tactical nuclear weapons to do what they call soberize (ph) or scare the adversary into stopping their, their attack on Russia.

So it's basically giving the bloody nose and the first stage of a conflict that might be enough and they've trained their military in some scenarios to potentially be ready for Putin to give that order.

BURNETT: So when you went through some of the scenarios that could trigger the use of nuclear weapons. You know, you said someone invades Russia, okay, fine. But then others -- there's other things you report on. Again in these documents that you obtained that, you know, they could use nukes to, quote, stop aggression or even in the instance, Max, you report to make Russia's navy, quote, more effective.

I mean, talk about a subjective thing and what appears to be an incredibly low bar.

SEDDON: Well, the real -- the real bar is either higher or lower than that because something that these documents made clear, and this is also something that's -- that Russia doesn't hide, the sole authority for ordering a nuclear strike deal with a smaller tactical nuclear weapon or a larger strategic one, that belongs to Vladimir Putin alone.

And what we see is that he could order something at the low threshold that is described in the documents that we saw. But he could do that and even lower threshold or the higher threshold, and this has been an issue ever since the full-scale invasion of Ukraine started two years ago, is that it's very hard to get into Putin's head. We don't really know what -- what he's thinking. And that has been something that has really given pause to Western powers in arming Ukraine because the worry is that with these thresholds, that Putin could suddenly decide that a line has been crossed, and then it might be too late.


BURNETT: Right, that the absolute authority that he has, the absolute power.

Max, in some sense, countries prepare for a lot of things that seem counterintuitive or that might be surprising, and maybe this goes in that category. But nonetheless, I know the documents that you obtained shows scenarios of an invasion of Russia by China. China, obviously, is a huge partner for Russia right now and providing a lot of weaponry and support for Putin's war in Ukraine.

But yet in the document, you see plans for what they would do if invaded by China. What do you read into that?

SEDDON: Well, I think -- I think we have to be clear that the these documents they date from 2008 to 2014, and especially since Xi Jinping took power, in 2012, Russia and China have become much, much closer. The Russians abandoned some of the skepticism on military side. There is some military cooperation. It is still, still comparatively limited.

But even if it's hard to picture a Chinese invasion of Russia right now, it's quite clear that you speak to experts who, who study the Russian military and you compare these exercises to exercises that we know the Russian military still does. They still view China as a threat. Otherwise, they wouldn't store nuclear -- nuclear weapons, have units in the far east, trying just as recently as November, they had an exercise near -- near the Chinese border with missiles that can only hit China.

You don't have to be a rocket scientist to work out what the threat they're training for those.

BURNETT: All right. Well, Max, thank you so much. I appreciate it. Obviously, you staying up late and sharing that. I hope I want to read the full story is really incredible reporting. Thank you.

SEDDON: Thanks so much.

BURNETT: And also tonight, Alexei Navalny's funeral, it will be Friday at a cemetery in Moscow, according to his spokesperson. Now, Yulia Navalnaya, who has not shied away from the spotlight and the 12 days since her husbands death is warning that the memorial service could turn violent if police cracked down on attendees.

Matthew Chance is OUTFRONT tonight in Moscow.


MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN CHIEF GLOBAL AFFARIS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Before Europe's parliament, the widow of Alexei Navalny is continuing his stand, urging lawmakers to treat the Kremlin as a criminal gang, to investigate its financial dealings and punish the financiers it employs.

YULIA NAVALNAYA, ALEXEI NAVALNY'S WIDOW: You cannot hurt Putin with another resolution or another set of sanctions. That is no different from the previous ones. You cannot defeat him by thinking he's a man of principle who had its morals and truths. He is not like that. And Alexei realized that a long time ago.

CHANCE: The Kremlin is yet to comment on the remarks, but tonight, Russia's president, he's paying his last respects, but not to Alexei Navalny.

This, the funeral of a loyal supreme court judge who passed away last week. Navalny's team say the burial of the late opposition leader will take place on Friday, amid a struggle to find a venue. And Putin is unlikely to attend.

Nor are his bereaved family. Yulia Navalnaya has already been threatened with jail on pro-Kremlin media and even laying her husband to rest on Friday. She told the E.U. parliament may provoke a crackdown.

NAVALNAYA: The funeral will take place the day after tomorrow. And I'm not sure yet whether it will be peaceful or whether police will arrest those who have come to say goodbye to my husband.

CHANCE: Already, human rights groups say hundreds have been detained across Russia at makeshift memorials, set up after Navalny's sudden death in a notorious Arctic Penal colony earlier this month. His body was then withheld, say Navalny's team, what his widow calls an abuse that prolongs the family's agony.

NAVALNAYA: He was starved in a tiny stone cell, cut off from the outside world and denied visits, phone calls, and then even letters. And then they killed him. Even after that, they abused his body and abused his mother.

CHANCE: The Kremlin denies the allegations of wrongdoing and any responsibility for Navalny's death. Near the Kremlin, meanwhile, Western ambassadors have been remembering the loss of another Russian opposition leader, not Navalny, but Boris Nemtsov, gun down here back in 2015. The Kremlin denies any involvement in this killing, too.

But anyone who takes on Russia's opposition mantle knows they're taking a huge risk.


CHANCE (on camera): Well, Erin, it's still unclear tonight where in Moscow exactly Alexei Navalny will be buried. The funeral service is being held at a church in the area of the Russian capital where the late opposition leader lived. But Navalny's team say that under pressure now to move the burial to a different, more private cemetery where the general public can be more easily kept away.

Erin, back to you.

BURNETT: Matthew, thank you very much.

And thanks to all of you for being with us as always.

"AC360" starts now.