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Biden Speaks at Arlington National Cemetery on Veterans Day; Biden: We Cannot Forget Those Serving in Harm's Way; Trump Asks Federal Appeals Court to Block Release of his White House Records Ahead of Tomorrow's Deadline; Trump asks Appeals Court to Stop Release of WH Records. Aired 12-12:30p ET
Aired November 11, 2021 - 12:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: And thank you for raising such a fine man Tony Blinken our Secretary of State. To all our veterans past and present, we thank you, we honor you and we remember always what you've done for us.
I'd like to recognize one of our national heroes who is here today, Medal of Honor Recipient, Mr. Brian Buker. During the Vietnam War, then first lieutenant dagger put the safety of his fellow troops above a zone providing cover fire against an attacking enemy, and even calling in artillery fire on his own position so our forces had a better chance to withdraw.
Wounded, unable leave the area he evaded capture for eight days, until finally, federal friendly forces retook the position. Yours is a remarkable story, I'll never be forgotten, will also never forget the stories of American leaders and icons we've lost recently, which shaped our nation in ways that are hard to measure.
I've lost like many of you, three good friends in the last month, General Colin Powell, a child of immigrants who grew up to be joint -- Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Secretary of State man who is a friend but who earned universal respect of Americans and people for his leadership, in uniform and out.
And a guy who became good friends, and many times I was in and out of Iraq, as a Vice President and a Senator, General Ray Odierno. I'm out multiple times in Iraq and who did so much to help get us where we are today. And who always put the troops and veterans first; it was an honor that my sons Major Biden serve under his command at the time.
And my friend and colleague were mentioned already. United States Senator Max Cleveland was a triple amputee knew the cost of war as well as anyone could ever know it, and went on to champion the dignity and care of Americans wounded veterans throughout his life.
We lost all three of these incredible veterans in the last several weeks, and our hearts go out to their families. These are stories that inspire generation after generation of Americans a step forward to defend our nation. And today, we pay homage to the unrelenting bravery and dedication that distinguishes all those who have earned the title of American Veteran.
It's an honor that not only a small percentage of Americans can claim, and one that marks those who are able to claim it as brothers and sisters. It's a badge of courage that unites across all ages, regardless of background because to be a veteran, is have endured and survived challenges most Americans will never know.
You've come through the trials and testing. Brave, dangerous and deprivations face down tragic realities of war and death. You've done it for us. You've done it for America, to defend and serve American values, to protect our country and our constitution against all enemies, and to lay a stronger, more secure foundation on which future generations can continue to build a more perfect union.
Each of our veterans is the link and a proud chain of patriots that has stood in the defense of our country from Bunker Hill to Bellow Woods, Gettysburg Jima -- reservoir to Konar Valley. Each understood the price of freedom and need shoulder that burden on our behalf.
Our veterans represent the best of America. You are the very spine of America, not just the backbone; you're the spine of this country. And all of us, all of us, owe you. And so on Veterans Day and every day we honor that great debt and recommit ourselves to keep in our sacred obligation as a nation to honor what you've done.
We have many obligations to our children to our elderly to those truly in need. But I've gotten in trouble way back when I was young Senator for saying we only have one truly sacred obligation we have many obligations, but one truly sacred obligation to properly prepare those and equip those who we send in harm's way and care for them and their families while they're both deployed and when they return home.
BIDEN: This is a lifetime sacred commitment. It never expires. And for me and for Jill and for the entire Biden Family is personal. When Beau's deployed to Iraq, after spending six months in Kosovo, as an Assistant U.S. Attorney trying to help trying to set up a criminal justice system I got a call from one day.
He said dad, what are you doing Friday? I said what do you need and when did he said; I'd like you to pin my bars on? I said what in the heck have you done? He said someone's got to finish these wars, dad true story.
Jill and I learned what it meant to pray every day for the safe return of someone you love so many of you have done that. Our grandkids learned what it meant to have their dad overseas in a war zone instead of back at home for a year, tucking them into bed reading that story every night.
Thousands of Americans tens of thousands have had that experience. As English Poet John Milton wrote, "They also serve only stand and wait" all mothers and fathers sons and daughters, spouses, all those who stand alongside our veterans and their families, caregivers, survivors. You are the solid steel spine and bears up under every burden. The courageous heart raises every challenge. We've asked so much of you for so long, and our nation is grateful. For two decades, the lives of our service members and their families and veterans have been shaped by the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Since 9/11 hundreds of thousands of Americans have served. So many are still serving today in harm's way we cannot forget them. The American people are forever grateful and an awe of what you've accomplished. But in fulfilling their mission so many veterans and their families and caregivers have been through hell some facing deployments after deployment, spending months and years away from their families, missing birthdays, anniversaries and collections.
I remember one of the last times I flew into Iraq, in the so called "Silver Bullet" I remember walking up to the cockpit. And the crew masters along with the pilots were up there and I said, how many of you is this; your first tour? No one raised their hand or five people. Second tour, no one raised their hand. Third tour two raise their hand, fourth tour two raised their hand. Fifth one raised their hand.
Folks, on Veterans Day we have to always remember that there's nothing low risk of low cost about war for the women and men who fight it. I carry with me in my pocket every single day. I have my chaffs to check with the Defense Department. In the back of my schedule I have U.S. daily troops in Afghanistan killed and wounded.
U.S. daily troops in Iraq killed and wounded 52,323 not roughly 53,000 every one of these individuals has a family as a union at home. 53,323 American servicemen and women wounded in the conflicts of Iraq and Afghanistan. 7074 gave their lives last full measure of the devotion.
Untold thousands more return home as our secretary can tell you with unseen psychological wounds of war. Enduring grief worn by our Gold Star families. These are the cost of war that they'll carry it -- will carry as a nation for decades to come. And all veterans service members or family as caregivers, survivors I want you to know that our administration is going to meet the sacred obligation that we owe you.
BIDEN: We're going to work with Congress, Republicans and Democrats to get that to make sure our veterans receive the world class benefits that they've earned, and meet the sacred, specific care specific needs that they each individually need.
That means expanding presumptive conditions for toxic exposure, particulate matter, including -- and burn pits. We're going to keep pushing on this front to be more nimble and responsive. Reviewing all the data and evidence to determine additional presumptive conditions that make sure our veterans don't have to wait to get the care they need.
It also means prioritizing mental health care as necessary to treat the invisible wounds that so many of our veterans carry, including pursuing our newly released comprehensive public health strategy to reduce military and veteran suicides.
I want to say clearly too all our veterans, if you're struggling, you're so used to never asking for anything. If you're struggling, reach out, call Veterans Crisis Line. Having trouble thinking about things, it's no different than if you had a wound in your arm.
It makes make us -- also making sure the growing population of women and LGBTQ plus veterans receive appropriate services and support. As we continue our efforts to defeat the pandemic and build back better means keeping the needs of veterans' front and center.
The American Rescue Plan included $17 billion to support VA COVID-19 response to get vaccination vaccine shots and arms as fast as possible. And -- programs that provide rapid retraining assistance for veterans who may have lost their jobs in the pandemic housing assistance, debt forgiveness, and to invest in improving VA facilities and the living conditions of vulnerable Veterans.
Through Jill's work of joining forces are also working to support our veterans and military families, survivors and caregivers, so they can have what they need to thrive. They deserve it. As Secretary McDonough noted this Veterans Day also marks the centennial of one of the most hallowed American monuments the Tomb of the Unknowns.
100 years ago today, an American soldier of the First World War, as the tomb says no but to God, and a quote completed the voyage from unidentified battlefield in France over the rough Atlantic seas, here to Arlington National Cemetery.
He lay in stay under the Capitol rotunda for two days on the same plinth that held the body of Lincoln as 90,000 Americans came to pay respects. On the final leg of his journey he was escorted from the Capitol by the President of the United States, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, members of Congress, General Pershing and the Chiefs of Staff.
Medal of Honor Recipients all walking as "The Washington Post" said, processing without parallel to give honor due to American service members, not just the anonymous soul today in tune in gleaming marble but the generations of Americans who dared all restore Gable for the cause of freedom.
To commemorate and the wounds of the member in the words of a member of Congress who proposed legislation created a memorial, an American warrior quote, this is the quote, "Who typifies the soul of American Veterans of the soul of America, America's soul".
It's why our veterans have always fought, always been willing to put them in the line. At the first unknown, lies now with his brethren, unnamed worries from later wars. Fellow patriots who picked up the "Mantle of Honor" made it their burden.
Today 100 years later, we keep a sacred watch over their graves generations of elite sentinels have taken the post pledging their eternal vigilance.
BIDEN: We lay wreaths we renew our oath. We stand in solemn all of such fidelity. Because for us to keep faith with American veterans, we must never forget exactly what was given us what each of them was willing to put on the line for us. I must never forget. That is the mighty arm or the American warrior, never bending, never breaking, never yielding, generation after generation.
A secured for us the blessings of a nation that still stands today as a beacon of liberty, democracy and justice around the world. God bless you all. God bless all American Veterans, and those who proudly earn that time. And may God protect our troops. Thank you.
JOHN KING, CNN HOST: John King in Washington. You've been listening to watching now the President of the United States Joe Biden. This is his first Veterans Day as Commander in Chief, speaking at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery.
The president saying how proud he was to represent, quote, "The proud chain of patriots who are America's Veterans" and of course, this is personal for the president. His late son Beau served in the Delaware National Guard did a tour of duty in Iraq; the president said that gave him an appreciation for what he called the solid steel spine of America's military families, those who wait at home when their sons and daughters are deployed overseas.
As he watched the ceremonies play out here, the president also taking time to reach out saying to any veteran out there who might be having mental health issues might be pondering suicide, to reach out to get some help, said it's just like a wound in your arm, please reach out and get the help that you so much deserve.
Again, very personal comments from the President of the United States on this Veterans Day, his first at Arlington National Cemetery, tributes around the country as well on this very important day, we'll continue to track those. And when we come back, just ahead some breaking news on President Trump's latest attempt to block secret records from the January 6 Committee, we'll be right back.
KING: Hello everybody! Welcome back to "Inside Politics". I'm John King in Washington. Some breaking news right now in the search for truth about January 6th and a last resort legal challenge from the former president; moments ago Donald Trump filed this with a federal court asking an appeals court to stop him to stop him the requirement that he turn over sensitive presidential records to the House Committee investigating the January 6th insurrection, that after late Wednesday, the former president lost again in U.S. District Court.
Let's get straight to seen as Paula Reid is tracking these developments for us. Paula, what's the latest?
PAULA REID, CNN SENIOR LEGAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Well, John, just moments ago, Trump asked the Court of Appeals in D.C. to delay the handover of his White House Records to lawmakers, while he appeals a decision by a lower court that would allow the House Select Committee investigating the insurrection to access some of his records related to January 6.
So far it hasn't been going very well for Trump in court. Twice in the past roughly 48 hours Judge Tanya Chutkan ruled against Trump in his quest to keep his White House records from the House Select Committee. On Tuesday Chutkan ruled on the overall case, that as a former president, she says that Trump does not have the power to keep record secret when the current president supports their release.
Now after that decision, Trump asked her to buy him some time before his records are handed over so we could appeal her decision. And not surprisingly, Chutkan would not grant that delay of her own decision. But as a procedural matter, he had to ask her first before moving up the ladder to a higher court, which is exactly what he did in this motion.
Now as of right now, the National Archives which inherited Trump's records after he left office, will begin handing over some of these disputed records on Friday, unless a court orders a delay. And John, whoever loses at the appellate level will likely ask the Supreme Court to take up this case so a lot riding for Trump and the committee on this.
KING: Right. I would say a lot riding in the search for the truth as well. Paula Reid grateful for the hustle on the breaking news! With me in studio to share their reporting and their insights Margaret Talev of "AXIOS" Nolan McCaskill of "The Los Angeles Times", "POLITICO's" Laura Barron-Lopez and CNN Legal Analyst Carrie Cordero.
Carrie, let me start with you. You're reading through the brief. Does the former president have much of a case to make as he now goes up to the appeals court level?
CARRIE CORDERO, CNN LEGAL & NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Not up -- not according to the District Court Judge, as Paula was describing the District Court Judge rejected his argument for an injunction? And she really notes that he doesn't have any new arguments when I look through this new brief that he has before the appellate court.
There are no new arguments that he's making. He's just relying on the same old arguments. And what really comes across is that his team continues to argue as if he were still the president. They still consider that he's making arguments that the disclosure of the documents are not in the public interest, whereas the district court said that disclosure is what in the public interest -- is in the public interest.
And that's what president the current President Biden has said is that disclosure is in the public interest. So there's this disagreement between the Trump team saying this case what they say in their brief, presents weighty and rarely litigated constitutional issues that could have a profound effect on the executive branch, but the actual executive branch is saying not really. KING: And they are rarely litigated, but they have it big just because you don't normally have these big investigations involving presidents, but there has been one let's go back to 1977. Nixon versus the GSA, which is a similar case of the Supreme Court, said the privilege is not for the benefit of the president as an individual, but for the benefit of the Republic.
Which gets you the point if the Trump team can arguing up there at the appeals court level now the Supreme Court level would be next will it get there is it almost guaranteed to get there or can the appeals court essentially shut it down in a way that keeps it from the High Court?
CORDERO: I think the appeals court can -- has a basis based on what the district court judge has written and her opinions has it has a sound basis to reject his appeal. He could then appeal that again. I mean, he has an ability to have his case heard.
But the courts don't have to continue to entertain these arguments from a private individual about matters that the current executive has are already weighed in on. As the district court judge said in one of our early opinions, she said, presidents are not kings, and plaintiff is not president. And that's really the key in this.
KING: And this happens to be fact, as well. Nolan, when you get to Capitol Hill, this committee, you know, has been worried that this would take forever. The committee is trying to search for the truth. It's trying to have hearings, it wants the witnesses, it wants the documents, and it knows what the courts say about Donald Trump will have a domino effect on all of the other people come forward before?
I assume the committee has to be happy right now they get as soon as tomorrow, they might start to see some of these records.
NOLAN MCCASKILL, CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER, LOS ANGELES TIMES: Right. I mean, I think they would certainly love to have these records as soon as possible. Just thinking about this whole entire situation earlier, like it's actually against Donald Trump's interest to try to delay the documents.
Now, when I was talking to people who were being interviewed to potentially work for the committee, they were telling me that the committee was telling them that they wanted to wrap up around maybe March of next year. I know you had House Republicans basically delay the formation of the committee, which wasted some time.
So Donald Trump is able to successfully delay this, he could sort of end up in a situation where House Democrats on this committee are releasing information about January 6, and say, August, September, October, really close to an election, which does have a huge impact on a race. And so that being said, I don't think it's in Donald Trump's best interest to try to delay this.
I mean, it is in his character to be a fighter and to fight for this, but I think that it could end up harming House Republicans, but he is --
KING: Politically and as Carrie notes they continue to refer to Donald Trump in here as if he's the active president. That's the keeping the audience of one happy. As you go through this again, Donald Trump is Exhibit A in the legal fight. Does he have privilege? Does he have to turn over these documents, but so many of his allies have refused subpoenas?
And so what the courts say here will have a domino effect on line among them is Steve Bannon who is still out on the road, still talking to Republican groups and still saying this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVE BANNON, FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF STRATEGIST: In 2020, Donald Trump won a bigger victory in this country. And I will debate any person take on any Presidential Commission go before Congress do anything they want and show them the receipts starting here in Arizona. Here's the beauty of Trump. He'll be the only one in American history that wins the presidency three times.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: That is more evidence in the greatest fraud in American political history, which is the lies they continue to tell their own supporters. Steve Bannon, I'll go before any committee, he defied a subpoena. The committee wanted him to come in and tell the truth.
If you'll go before anybody and make your case, why won't Steve Bannon show up before Congress and answer the questions?
LAURA BARRON-LOPEZ, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, POLITICO: Right. And whether or not the DOJ charges him with criminal content is what all of those other Trump allies or Trump -- the aides that were in Trump's inner circle as high level as Stephen Miller, as you know, the Former Press Secretary, Kayleigh McEnany, and even some low level aides there?
All of them, we're looking to see whether or not the DOJ charges Bannon because if he -- if they don't, if they don't follow through on that, then they're going to think that they can also defy these subpoenas. There are now 16 subpoenas out or so that's roughly the level that the January 6 Committee issued this week.
And that is a huge question about whether or not this committee gets to the truth gets to the bottom of not just what the communication around January 6 itself, but also what influence there was and the outcome of the election and counting votes and attempts to try to stop the count?
MARGARE TALEV, MANAGING EDITOR, AXIOS: I just think the bottom line is underneath all these legal arguments and today's response or two truths. The former president does not want to turn over any documents to anybody and wants a little transparency as possible around the inner workings of decisions that will be documented there.
And two has an extreme interest in delaying this as long as possible and so does everybody else down the chain.
KING: Everybody else down the chain? I just I will debate any person take any Presidential Commission go before Congress, then go it's right up the street go. Up next, prices are skyrocket to just about everything we take an up close look at pocketbook pressure on American families and intense political pressure on the president.