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George Conway is Interviewed about the January 6th Hearing; Ezekiel Emanuel is Interviewed about Biden Having Covid; Deep Pockets of Texas; Astros Sweep Yankees. Aired 6:30-7a ET
Aired July 22, 2022 - 06:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): Are you aware of any phone call by the president of the United States to the secretary of defense that day?
PAT CIPOLLONE, FORMER TRUMP WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: Not that I'm aware of, no.
CHENEY: Are you aware of any phone call by the president of the United States to the attorney general of the United States that day?
CHENEY: Are you aware of any phone call by the president of the United States to the secretary of homeland security that day?
CIPOLLONE: I'm not aware of that, no.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: That was Congresswoman Liz Cheney questioning former Trump White House Counsel Pat Cipollone as the January 6th committee highlighted what they called Donald Trump's inactions during the Capitol attack. The choice he made not to act, they say.
Joining us now, George Conway, attorney and contributing columnist at "The Washington Post."
George, you've now seen all of this. And last night was a moment the committee was building up to.
What did you see as the most important part of what we heard last night?
GEORGE CONWAY, CONSERVATIVE ATTORNEY: Well, I think it was the entire package. I don't think it was any one element.
I think what we saw was a picture of not just dereliction, I mean, the theme last night was dereliction of duty, but it was depravity, it was utter depravity in Trump's not just failing to do something, but failing to do his duty in the context of a situation that he created and he glorified it. He -- you know, he not just -- it wasn't just that he didn't talk to the secretary of defense and didn't talk to anybody about getting security up on The Hill, he didn't talk to his vice president. He affirmatively launched a tweet attacking the vice president that led the crowd to want to storm the barriers even more. And the fact that he showed absolutely no remorse about it. He absolutely showed no caring whatsoever about the fate of his vice president, of the fate of our democracy, the fate of the officers on Capitol Hill. And, at the end of the day, when he went up to go to the residence, all he could say was, Mike Pence let him down. That's all he cared about. He only cared about himself. He didn't care about the duty that he undertook when he raised his right hand on January 20, 2017, to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution.
To the contrary, what the evidence shows is that he created something of a reality show on Capitol Hill. He sent -- you know, like they put people on an island to see how they'll behave. He put - he sent all these people up on The Hill to see what would happen, to see if they could do something that he was unable to do through the courts, through persuading the vice president and through trying to persuade state officials. He tried to stop by any means possible the peaceful transition of power.
And if the Justice Department doesn't look seriously at this point, at charging him with the crimes of conspiring to defraud the United States, essentially to steal an election, to do that through the use of fraudulent means, and to -- to interfere with a congressional proceeding, an official proceeding corruptly, and I don't know how you could make -- do this more corruptly than Donald Trump did. If the Justice Department doesn't do this now, there's something seriously wrong.
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: And that's a big question of whether they will do something.
And, George, I remember reporting that day. And one thing that the White House staffers were so deeply shaken by was how nothing had really deterred him. Watching all of that had not changed his mind on anything or made him think twice about the election lie that he was pushing. And one of the most remarkable moments, I think, last night were these outtakes from the video that he recorded on January 7th. I remember that day because they did not let the White House press come in. Typically, if the president's going to make a statement, they'd let the White House press come in, they would have the president then come in, we'd be in there with our cameras, and that's how it would be recorded. That's how the statement would be put out live on air. This one was recorded, and they just tweeted it out.
And last night we actually got to see what it looked like behind the scenes there.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: And to those who broke the law, you will pay. You do not represent our movement. You do not represent our country. And if you broke the law -- I can't say that. I'm not -- I already said you will pay.
But this election is now over. Congress has certified the results. I don't want to say the election is over.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: George, what did you think?
CONWAY: You know, it's just a reflection of his pathological narcissism. He -- as one of the White House aides whose emails was -- or texts were quoted last night, he can't bring himself to criticize the rioters, the insurrectionists, because they were for him and he would be thereby criticizing himself. He can't do that. He identifies with them because they supported him, and it was all about him. It wasn't about the Constitution. It wasn't about the oath. It wasn't about fairness. It wasn't about right. It wasn't about wrong. It wasn't about facts. It wasn't about law. It was all about him and his desire to retain power.
And since those people were supporting him, he couldn't bring himself to criticize them and talk about them possibly breaking the law. And he certainly wasn't going to admit that he lost the election because that's the ultimate blow to his narcissistic, delicate, fragile, pathetic ego.
BERMAN: George, we heard much more from Pat Cipollone, his videotaped deposition last night. The exchange we played before, there was another one where he was asked, was there anyone in the White House who didn't want this to stop. And when asked specifically if the president wanted it to stop or not, there was this pregnant pause. I mean it lasted forever. And then he basically claimed privilege there.
Overall, what did you get from Pat Cipollone? What more would you want from him and what did you think about where he chose to use privilege?
CONWAY: Well, I would have loved to hear -- have heard exactly, in (INAUDIBLE), what he said to the president. But they engaged in this sort of artificial game, I guess, to avoid a fight and so that Cipollone would have the fig leaf of pretending to uphold a privilege that really doesn't exist and to the committee could get something out of Cipollone. He pretended that what he said to the counsel - to the - to the -- excuse me, the chief of staff and to other people at the White House who were serving the president was not privileged and that what he said directly to the president was privileged, and that's just baloney. The executive privilege would cover some -- telling somebody - telling the chief of staff what the president needs to do from a legal standpoint. That would be privileged if it were privileged to begin with. Of course, it wasn't privileged here because, you know, privilege has been waived six ways to Sunday and the privilege also belongs to the public and the Justice Department -- excuse me, and the courts have already held that it doesn't prevent the January 6th committee from looking into this. So, it was really just kind of a fig leaf and baloney that Pat Cipollone was trying to maintain a privilege line.
But the fact is, they got enough out of him. They got -- it's clear that he wanted to make clear to the committee and to the public that he stood against what Donald Trump was doing, and he did everything in his power to stop it. And we can infer that what he said to the chief of staff and to others about the need for Trump to make a statement, to put a stop to the violence on The Hill was something he said directly to the president.
COLLINS: Yes. A lot of what Pat Cipollone said last night -- or said in that testimony was what he didn't say. It was very clear watching his expressions what he was really trying to say there.
George Conway, thank you for joining us this morning with your take aways.
CONWAY: Thank you for having me.
COLLINS: Meanwhile, President Biden is now doing what so many of us have done, working remotely after testing positive for Covid-19. We'll have an update on his condition.
BERMAN: The Trump/Pence proxy battle takes center stage. They are endorsing dueling rallies tonight in Arizona, endorsing opposing candidates.
COLLINS: This morning it's day one of President Biden's isolation at the White House after he tested positive for Covid-19. According to the White House, the 79-year-old president has mild symptoms that include a runny nose, fatigue, the occasional dry cough. The president is fully vaccinated and double boosted, and he is now being treated with Paxlovid.
So, to discuss this, let's bring in Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, a former member of President Biden's transition Covid-19 team, and currently the vice provost of the Global Initiatives at the University of Pennsylvania.
Doctor, thank you for joining us because, obviously, this is something that people kind of had expected inside the White House at least could happen long ago in advance. And so what do you make of what you've heard from White House officials about what his condition is right now?
DR. EZEKIEL EMANUEL, VICE PROVOST OF GLOBAL INITIATIVES, UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA: Well, it's pretty consistent, and I think they've been very transparent releasing his health records, telling us exactly how he's feeling and what they're doing. It's a very big contrast to President Trump.
But I think, you know, it is pretty mild and he does seem to have a mild case. And being on Paxlovid is going to help.
And so I expect him to have a good recovery.
BERMAN: What concerns, unique concerns, if any?
EMANUEL: Well, I hope that this -- I have three. One is, I hope that the symptoms remain mild and that he is able to get back to work very quickly. I do hope he doesn't have a rebound from Paxlovid. That's where you feel much better, virus goes away and then it comes back because you haven't killed all the cells with the virus. And last one is long Covid. It's lurking out there. We don't know exactly what the frequency is that people get long Covid, but it's over 1 percent, people are talking about 5 percent or 10 percent, and that would be a serious health problem.
COLLINS: And on Paxlovid, he started his first dose yesterday we were told by Dr. Jha at the White House. And so - and he'll be on CNN in the next hour.
But on Paxlovid, there has been this concern about taking it and it helps so much we've heard from people with their symptoms. A lot of doctors have encouraged taking it as soon as possible. But what is the concern with rebounding and the idea that this could happen and how likely is it that President Biden may do so?
EMANUEL: We don't know exactly how likely it is that he will do so. The concern is that you take Paxlovid for five days, you feel better, you may even test negative, and then, just a few days after you stop, the virus comes back. The reigning hypothesis -- and, again, it's a hypothesis -- is that we don't kill all the virus with the drug with just the five-day course. And that is a worry that, you know, basically you prolong the illness past what you thought when you were feeling better.
COLLINS: The White House says they believe it will dramatically lower the symptoms that he has and help with his recovery.
Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, thank you so much for joining us. And, obviously, we are wishing President Biden a recovery - a speedy recovery.
EMANUEL: Yes. Thank you.
BERMAN: So, big oil wielding big influence ahead of the midterms in Texas. How deep pockets are driving some campaigns in that state.
COLLINS: Plus, the January 6th committee showing the frustration between Trump campaign aides over the news of Officer Brian Sicknick's death. Brian Sicknick's family is going to join us ahead to talk about their reaction.
BERMAN: Just how influential is big money in Texas politics? This is a state, of course, often at the forefront of conservative legislation. And a new CNN special report takes a deep dive into this.
CNN's Ed Lavandera has this reporting and joins us live from Texas this morning.
Ed, what did you learn?
ED LAVANDERA, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, John, we have heard for years now that Democrats have their eye on Texas, turning this state blue. And you would think conventional political wisdom would tell you that if that is happening as statewide elections and the margins of victories for Republicans have gotten smaller, that Republicans here would moderate. But that isn't happening. And we set out to investigate, what are the forces at play here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LAVANDERA: Your voting record is just as conservative as many of the people who might be supported by these west Texas billionaires, and you voted for the abortion bill, you voted for the no permit gun carry bill and the bill that limits the discussion of race and gender in classrooms, you voted for that as well. So why haven't the Tim Dunn's and Farris Wilks supported you? It seems like you're doing stuff that they would agree with.
KEL SELIGER (R), TEXAS STATE SENATOR: My voting record is very conservative. Is it 100 percent conservative? No. There're 100 percenters and you're either owned or you're not owned.
LAVANDERA: So the way you describe this is, it almost sounds like, you know, senator Joe Smith, to make up a name, if they've got a ton of money that's coming from these west Texas billionaires, those billionaires are really the elected official.
SELIGER: It is a Russian-style oligarchy, pure and simple. Really, really wealthy people who are willing to spend a lot of money to get policy made the way they want it, and they get it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LAVANDERA: So, John, you'd think that a couple billionaires who have this much influence on Texas politics would be household names. They are not. So we're going to try to peel back the curtain on who they are and let people into this world, this world of Texas politics.
BERMAN: Oh, that does look interesting.
Ed Lavandera, what a terrific report. We look forward to watching it. Thanks so much, Ed.
And you can see the CNN special report "Deep in the Pockets of Texas" this Sunday, July 24th at 8:00 p.m.
COLLINS: The eighth hearing from the January 6th committee laid out how for 187 minutes that day the former president not only repeatedly ignored pleas from his family, top lawyers, top staffers to call off the violence, but he also signaled that he didn't want anything done about it. We have the biggest takeaways from last night's hearing up next.
COLLINS: The Astros opened the second half of the baseball season by sweeping the Yankees. Coy Wire has this morning's "Bleacher Report."
COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Kaitlan.
The Yankees dominated the first half of the season, but here come the Astros, winning 13 of 18 this month. They're now just two and a half games back of New York. Doubleheader in Houston. Game one. Tied with bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth.
J.J. Matijevic comes up clutch for the Astros. The 26-year-old rookie getting his first career walk off. A pinch hit single and he is swarmed by his teammates afterwards.
Astros win in that one 3-2.
Then, in the first inning of game two, Houston has liftoff. Yordan Alvarez and Alex Bregman hitting back to back homers off of Domingo German. Astros winning 7-5, sweeping the doubleheader.
But Yankees Manager Aaron Boone says that that doesn't matter just yet.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AARON BOONE, NEW YORK YANKEES MANAGER: I understand it's a big story. I understand the season we're in. It's not going to matter unless October. So, we're going to -- if we - if we happen to come back here in October, we're going to show up. We're going to expect to win. We think we're really good. They're really good. Don't overstate this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WIRE: This is setting up for a potentially epic post-season matchup, Kaitlan. Minute Maid Park has been where Yankees fans dreams in the post season have gone to die in recent years. Those Astros are 5-2 against the Yankees this season.
COLLINS: Coy, what a brutal way to start the morning for those fans.
WIRE: Sorry about that. John's half (ph).
BERMAN: The Yankees are the losingest team. They're the losingest team in baseball in the second half so far. No one has lost more in the second half.