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Inside Politics

Cmte Chair: Panel Has Shared Interview Transcripts With DOJ: Cheney: Trump Tried To Call Jan 6 Cmte Witness; Sources: House GOP Finishing Up Report About Jan 6 Security Failures; Draft Tweet: Trump Planned To Direct Supporters To U.S. Capitol; Jan 6 Rioter: We Stormed Capitol Because Trump Told Us To; Cipollone Gives Account Of Profane Dec 2020 Oval Office Meeting; BLS: Inflation Surges By 9.1 Percent, Highest Level In 40+ Years; Senate To Vote On Democrat-Led Bill That Protects Women Who Travel Out-Of-State To Get An Abortion. Aired 12- 12:30p ET

Aired July 13, 2022 - 12:00   ET



DANA BASH, CNN HOST, INSIDE POLITICS: Hello, and welcome to Inside Politics. I'm Dana Bash in Washington. John King is off today. No accident, the January 6 committee stitches together a sprawling tapestry of evidence, illustrating the way Donald Trump summoned the mob to Washington. Now the committee says, Trump tries to dial up a potential witness.

Plus, inflation hits another 40-year high, groceries, gas, electricity rent all way up. And President Biden just landed in the Middle East, but already there are signs that trips big objective, brokering a historic defense partnership is off to a rocky start.

We begin this hour with the January 6 committee's remarkable roadmap. Next week, the committee plans a minute-by-minute reveal, detailing what exactly Donald Trump was and was not doing in the 187 minutes between the Capitol breach and when he finally told the mob to leave.

This week's hearing offered a mountain of evidence, texts, tweets, encrypted messages, video testimony, the panel showed the overlap between far-right militias and Trump's orbit with a clear conclusion. The insurrection was not a rally gone rotten, but a dramatic and coordinated final stand from extremists and Trump allies.

We also saw clips from tape testimony of Trump White House counsel Pat Cipollone, who complied with the committee subpoena, most of what he told the panel will be revealed next week. But yesterday, he helped paint a picture of a profane December 2020 screaming match in the Oval Office. The meeting finished with Trump again denying math and reality that he lost and hitting send on a tweet that call for his supporters to come to Washington.

Let's go first this hour to Capitol Hill and CNN's Ryan Noble. So, Ryan, the select committee really is providing a roadmap. What are you hearing today from your sources?

RYAN NOBLE, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. There is a lot happening, Dana. Obviously, some of it coming from what happened in that hearing yesterday, and then more just having to do with the investigation in general. One of the big revelations that came actually after the hearing last night, was that the chairman of the select committee, Bennie Thompson said that the committee is now starting to cooperate with the Department of Justice and allowing them to see some of the transcripts and other documents that the committee has obtained through in camera searches, meaning they can come in and take a look at those documents.

You'll remember that before that there was a bit of a standoff between the two sides, as the committee felt as though they weren't ready to hand over all the work that they had put into the Department of Justice for their investigation. It looks as though that stalemate at least on some level has been broken through.

Now, you mentioned the other revelations that happened during that committee hearing and what comes next. Perhaps, the one thing that has everybody asking questions about right now is that little note that Liz Cheney, the vice chair gave at the end of the presentation where see suggested that there was a potential witness who received a phone call out of the blue from the former President Donald Trump, and that the person declined that call.

They then told their lawyer about it. The lawyer told the committee and now the committee has referred that information to the Department of Justice for what they say, could potentially be witness intimidation. Now, there isn't a whole heck of a lot.

We know beyond what Cheney told us. And we'd need more information to even draw that sort of a conclusion. But obviously, the committee believes that this is a problem. And of course, we've known for some time that they have been worried about witness intimidation.

And then the final thing, I would talk about, Dana, is what's going to happen after this committee finishes its work. Of course, there is going to be that final report, obviously, the Department of Justice is going to do with it as they see fit. But there's a very good chance that the Republicans are going to be in charge of the House of Representatives after the 2022 midterms, and they are already giving us a little bit of a hint of what life is going to be like after that.

Our Melanie Zanona obtaining a document sent by Andy Biggs, of course, the former chair of the Freedom Caucus that he sent to the chair of the Oversight Committee, Carolyn Maloney, telling her that he believes it's time for that committee to look into the controversial documentary 2000 mules, which is based on this unfounded claim, that there were using cell phone tracking data that people were able to determine that there were mules that they described with people bringing ballots to drop boxes across the country, and that's part of the reason they believe Donald Trump lost the election.

It's been debunked repeatedly by fact checkers, but this is an example of what could come if Republicans take control of the House of Representatives, Dana. They will be making - they will be staging investigations very similar to this, not just things having to do with January 6 and the 2020 election, but a whole host of other issues. [12:05:00]

BASH: Such an important point. Ryan, I'm sure you're going to get your steps in today in those halls just like you do every day. Thank you so much for all that reporting. And here with me in the studio to share their reporting and insights, Punchbowl's Heather Caygle, CNN's Eva McKend, Laura Barron-Lopez of PBS NewsHour, and CNN legal analyst Carrie Cordero. Hi, everybody.

Carrie, I want to start with you. One of the first things that Ryan was reporting, which is that the committee is starting to more aggressively share the documents that they're getting the witness transcripts with DOJ. What does that tell you?

CARRIE CORDERO, CNN LEGAL & NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Well, it's a good sign in terms of if there's information that the committee has obtained during the course of its inquiry that the justice department wasn't aware of, doesn't have, then that's important from - in terms of the justice department building its case. It has ongoing cases of seditious conspiracy. It has ongoing cases against just the individual rioters, and it potentially has investigations into efforts to overturn the election itself.

So, there's information that could be incriminating within those documents. There's also information about witnesses that the justice department might be planning to use in some of those cases. And if any witnesses have told the committee one thing and justice department something else, then that's certainly information that they would want to know as well.

BASH: One of the many, many things that the committee made public yesterday, was a draft tweet from the then president, where he said, I will be making a big speech at 10am on January 6 on the Ellipse, south of the White House. Please arrive early, massive crowds expected march to the Capitol after, stop the steal.

This is significant, for lots of reasons. But primarily because the whole question is whether or not the president and the people around him knew that this protest rally was going to end up in a march or even the aggressive attack. He knew, and people around him and other pieces of evidence that the committee put out, people in this stop the steal effort knew that him marching was a possibility. Why is that important?

EVA MCKEND, CNN NATIONAL POLITICS REPORTER: Well, because they have long maintained that this was meant to be a peaceful march. But this this draft tweet really flies in the face of that, and it suggests that he very much wanted to lead a violent mob to the Capitol. I think that is the greatest burden of this committee to make the case for criminality really clear.

You know, Dana, I have worked in many markets throughout this country and been in plenty of prisons and jails. And I think what is startling, I think, for so many watching this is that many are facing, I think, jail time, for a lot less, right, and for not trying to stage a coup. And it seems as though the former president has a long history of being able to being sort of on the edge of criminality but evade real consequences.

BASH: Yes. And that's, I mean, that's a whole separate important conversation. But you kind of alluded to the fact that, you know, he's the big fish, and he's the president, and he has so much power over the people who ended up going to the Capitol. That was another big part of the day yesterday. I want you to listen to what Stephen Ayres said about that.


STEPHEN AYRES, CAPITOL RIOTER: We didn't actually plan to go down there. You know, we went basically to see the stop the steal rally, and that was it.

REP. STEPHANIE MURPHY (D-FL): So why did you decide to march to the Capitol?

AYRES: Well, basically, you know, the president got everybody riled up, told everybody to head on down. So, we basically, we just fall on what he said.


LAURA BARRON-LOPEZ, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, PBS NEWSHOUR: Stephen Ayres' testimony was also returning (Ph) because he added that he was upset because he, like he said, was not planning to go to the Capitol. Decided to go to the Capitol because he was hanging on former President Trump's every word.

He said he was hanging on his every word. He was following his lead, and that ultimately, he didn't leave the Capitol until the president sent out again, that next statement after 187 minutes to say, everyone, you know, leave, we need to - this needs to be peaceful, stop the violence. And him saying that that was the reason why so many people dispersed. I think is clearly going to be a big part of what's to come in the subsequent hearing.

Because, again, Trump has - the committee has shown over and over again, that President Trump even from Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony, wanting to go to the Capitol with these people, have said repeatedly that he wanted to tell his supporters that he wanted to go to the Capitol.

And in addition, one thing that we don't know yet that came out of yesterday's hearing, was that how did people organizing the stop the steal rally, seemed to know that the president was going to say in his speech that everyone needs to go.


BASH: I mean, that's such an important question and we don't know. And they did not - that is - those are not dots that they connected. Dots that they did connect were just going to go back in time, a little bit chronologically back to December of 2020.

The way that this explosive meeting was described in the Oval Office with people who were helping him and contributing to the falsehoods in Trump's mind, were kind of snuck into the White House. And then it ended up being a screaming match inside the Oval Office. Listen to the description of that that came out yesterday.


PAT CIPOLLONE, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: I opened the door and I walked in. I saw General Flynn. I saw Sidney Powell sitting there. I don't think any of these people were providing the president with good advice. Was the meeting tense?

DEREK LYONS, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE STAFF SECRETARY: Oh, yes. It was not a casual meeting. At times there were people shouting at each other, hurling insults at each other.

SIDNEY POWELL, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN LAWYER: Cipollone and Herschmann and whoever the other guy was showed nothing but contempt and disdain of the president.

CIPOLLONE: The three of them were really sort of forcefully attacking me verbally.

ERIC HERSCHMANN, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE LAWYER: I think that it got to the point where the screaming was completely, completely out there. I mean, you have people walk in. It was late at night. It'd been a long day. And what they were proposing, I thought it was nuts.


HEATHER CAYGLE, MANAGING EDITOR, PUNCHBOWL NEWS: Yes. I think, one, this hearing was described as unhinge by Cassidy Hutchinson who was outside the door and heard it, which is interesting, and a lot of participants seem to walk away feeling that too. But the reason this is important is because it gets into the broader theme that everyone has touched on that Trump was an active and central participant in the planning up to January 6, and the day of.

And next week, I checked in with some committee sources, today, we'll see them start to connect those dots about the 187 minutes that he was quiet. They say that they're going to prove that it was a deliberate strategy for him to stay silent. It wasn't that he just didn't know what to do and was confused and overwhelmed. He did that because he wanted to delay the counting of the electoral votes and delay the certification. So, an ongoing theme.

BASH: When you went to the Liz Cheney school of given a good tease because that's a good one. All right, guys, standby. We have a lot more to discuss. But coming up. We're going to talk about a bleak inflation report, fueling even more economic fears. We're going to break down the numbers. Stay with us.



(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BASH: Inflation surged to a four decade high in June. A new report from the labor department shows that prices jumped by 9.1 percent from last year and 1.3 percent from just the month before, much of the increase was driven by high gas prices. But prices were up across the board, particularly for food at home up 12.2 percent over the year, with milk up 16.4 percent, eggs 33.1 percent and meets 8.2 percent.

We'll go now to CNN business reporter Matt Egan, tracking the numbers. Matt?

MATT EGAN, CNN BUSINESS REPORTER: Yes, Dana. The cost of living continues to go up at an alarming pace. I mean, we haven't seen 9 percent inflation since November of 1981. Back when Ronald Reagan was wrapping up his first year in the White House. I mean, many Americans have literally never experienced anything like this.

And it's really happening across the board, and gasoline prices up 16 percent over the past year, food prices rising at the fastest clip in four decades, and shelter, which is one of the biggest costs for families going up sharply. Some items are experiencing the biggest price spikes on record, everything from beer and haircuts to cleaning products and butter, all of them going up by the most since the government started tracking.

Now, high inflation is being driven by, you know, this perfect storm of COVID, the war in Ukraine and unprecedented stimulus from Washington. And it means that, you know, paychecks are just not going as far for families. And that is very painful.

I think the good news is that gasoline prices have started to come down. So that should help here. The bad news is that today's inflation report is going to keep the pressure on the Federal Reserve to slam the brakes on the economy. And then of the risk, of course is that the Fed over does it and ends up slowing the economy right into a recession.

BASH: Thank you so much for that report. Let's discuss with Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin. Senator, thank you so much for joining me. President Biden released a statement on the inflation report. And here's where that statement starts. He said, while today's headline inflation reading is unacceptably high, it's also out of date. Today's data does not reflect the full impact of nearly 30 days of decreases in gas prices.

So, Senator, he's right. Gas prices are down from last month's record highs. But when people come up to you in Wisconsin, in the grocery store, or at the gas station, and ask you about how high prices. Is that what you would tell them that the data is out of date?

SEN. TAMMY BALDWIN (D-WI): Certainly not. I know that people are really suffering with the inflation. And while it is great news that in the last month, gas prices have gone down by about $0.40 per gallon. That's really not the break people are looking for.

But I also have to talk about who's doing something about it, who's working to focus on this and bring prices down, whether those be prices of prescription drugs, insulin, whether that be price inflation that's been caused by supply chain disruptions. We're trying to address that and solve that issue.


Meanwhile, Republicans are just trying to make this a partisan issue rather than acknowledge the true underlying issues, the pandemic, the war in Ukraine, things that have no partisan cause. And so, we need to responsibly work on lowering prices. And the Republicans are just doing nothing to that end.

BASH: Well, you know, this because you've been in Congress for a while. You know, what it's like when the shoe was on the other foot when Republicans are in charge. They get the blame. It's just kind of the way things work. And on that note, we are in an election year.

You are not on the ballot, but your fellow Wisconsin Senator, Republican Ron Johnson is. Democrats think that if they can be any Republican, he may be the one. In all candor does all of this inflation, economic troubles, gas prices being high complicate that?

BALDWIN: You know, I think that this is for Wisconsinites, very clear set of choices. So, we don't know yet who our Democratic nominee is going to be because our primaries aren't until next month. However, our Democrats stand fully in favor of a woman's right and freedom to choose healthcare and when and whether to start a family and exercise the freedom to control her own body, and Ron Johnson does not.

In fact, he was heard saying that Wisconsinites could just go to Illinois. And that is, you know, that is no solution. That said, there's clear differences, again, in how our Democratic candidates are fighting for working people by America policies and bringing prices down by cutting the cost of prescription drugs and other actions.

BASH: You mentioned, the notion of going to another state, a foreign abortion when one is living in a state like Wisconsin, where it's virtually illegal now. Tomorrow, the Senate is going to have a procedural vote, to try to bring up legislation that you introduced to give federal protections for women who travel across state lines to get an abortion. It likely doesn't have the GOP votes to overcome an opposition. In fact, just one senator could say no, and it won't get brought up. What's the path forward for that?

BALDWIN: Yes. Well, first of all, we as Democrats in the Senate are taking an all of the above approach to in response to the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade. Whether that's earlier, bringing up my Women's Health Protection Act for a Senate vote that was blocked by a filibuster. Or whether that's bringing up Catherine Cortez Masto, who's the author of the 'Freedom to Travel for Health Care' vote, I'm a co-sponsor co-lead on that legislation.

And I think people need to understand the stakes of this. And so, we are going to be using our bully pulpit as well as bringing forward legislation that has the support of the vast majority of Americans in order to fight back against the Supreme Court action, as well as motivating people to use their voices and their votes. We need to have voters in record numbers voting for pro-choice members of Congress and state legislatures and senators. And in Wisconsin, we have the chance to do that.

BASH: I understand, Senator, what you're going to do with this vote tomorrow is to put a spotlight on it and force people to take a position. But very quickly, I know that you have said on this issue, you think the filibuster should be abolished, so that you can have regular majority votes on issues that have to do with abortion rights. But are you concerned that if Republicans do take over in House and the Senate, especially that will open the door to a simple majority vote to make abortion illegal on a national basis?

BALDWIN: You know, first of all, what the status quo is right now is unacceptable. 50 years of Supreme Court precedent were overturned, women lost fundamental freedoms. We now have people across this country, women who have fewer rights than their mothers and their grandmothers had. And now, depending on your state, your zip code, you have a different set of rights.

In Wisconsin, we have an 1849 law. Yes, 1849, 70 years before women had the right to vote. That dictates abortion in Wisconsin, and it is one that will lead to the prosecution of providers and those who assist in the provision of abortion care. The people of my state, I support pretty strongly a woman's freedom to control her own body and to control her own healthcare. And I hope and expect that we will be fighting back at the ballot box. Thank you.


BASH: Thank you so much for joining me. I appreciate it, Senator Baldwin. And President Biden is in Israel for the first leg of his high stakes Middle East trip. CNN is on the ground. Next?