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CNN TONIGHT: 1/6 Committee Member: Next Hearing To Focus On 187 Minutes From When Trump Left Stage To When He Told People To Go Home; Sources: Trump Tried To Call A Member Of The White House Support Staff Talking With January 6 Committee; January 6 Rioter Apologizes To Officers For His Role In Insurrection. Aired 9-10p ET

Aired July 13, 2022 - 21:00   ET




ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: The news continues. Let's hand it over to Laura Coates, and CNN TONIGHT.


LAURA COATES, CNN HOST: Thanks, Anderson. Nice to see you.

And I am Laura Coates. And this is CNN TONIGHT.

Look, we're seven hearings in. And we've learned a great deal about alleged election interference. The President's refusal to accept his defeat, at the polls. Not accepting the counsel of his real advisers, not the seeming imposters, but those who were actual advisers, not just yes-people, wanting to tell him exactly what he wants to hear, even when there's clearly no evidence, to support what he wanted to hear.

Well we have heard about the attempt to exploit the legal process, the Department of Justice, local election officials, and a relentless pressure campaign, to what he called an attempt to stop the steal.

Now, the fact that that nothing has actually been stolen? I mean, details, details, it seems! I'll leave you all to decide, whether the seven hearings, so far, have threaded the needle, or maybe moved your own needle.

But we are seven hearings in. And we're learning tonight that the January 6th committee's upcoming eighth hearing will now turn to the number 187. That's 187 minutes, where the President of the United States, was radio-silent. I mean, crickets! Well, at least publicly.

But what exactly was he doing for over three hours? I mean, after the Capitol had been breached, and while it was being attacked, while officers were valiantly fighting to protect members of Congress, and everyone inside that Capitol?

As witnesses described this mortal combat, almost a medieval-like combat, just what was the Commander-in-Chief, the one who swore to do this?



Preserve, protect and defend.

CHIEF JUSTICE JOHN ROBERTS, SUPREME COURT: The Constitution of the United States.

TRUMP: The Constitution of the United States.

ROBERTS: So help me God.

TRUMP: So help me God.


COATES: That - that one. What was he doing, for those 187 minutes, while the American Capitol was under siege? I mean, so far, we've heard that Mark Meadows said, "Well, he didn't want to do anything."


CASSIDY HUTCHINSON, FORMER AIDE TO TRUMP WH CHIEF OF STAFF MARK MEADOWS: I remember Pat saying to him, something to the effect of, "The rioters have gotten to the Capitol, Mark. We need to go down and see the President now."

And Mark looked up at him, and said, "He doesn't want to do anything."


COATES: And why wouldn't he want to do anything? Why is that?


HUTCHINSON: He doesn't think they're doing anything wrong.


COATES: Well, the committee seems to suggest that perhaps the reason he didn't think they were doing anything wrong was because well, he inspired them to do it.


ALEX JONES, AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE, ALT-RIGHT, AND FAR-RIGHT RADIO SHOW HOST: He wants the American people to march on Washington, D.C., on January 6th, 2021.

TIM POOL, AMERICAN YOUTUBER, POLITICAL COMMENTATOR, PODCAST HOST: And now Donald Trump is calling on his supporters to descend on Washington, D.C., January 6th.

MATT BRACKEN, RIGHT-WING COMMENTATOR: If necessary, storming right into the Capitol.


COATES: And just what was that call to action? Well, a tweet!


REP. JAMIE RASKIN (D-MD): Donald Trump's 1:42 AM tweet electrified and galvanized his supporters, especially the dangerous extremists, in the Oath Keepers, the Proud Boys, and other racist and white nationalist groups, spoiling for a fight, against the government.


COATES: And although it was 1:42 AM, I mean, the late hour should not fool you. It wasn't some kind of one of your roommates, drunk-dials people.

And what happened, January 6th? Well the committee says that was also no coincidence. I mean, you don't think that people just happen to have, say, the materials, to build gallows, outside the Capitol, at the spur of a moment, right? Or that everyone just so happened, to come prepared, to march to the Capitol, on the same date, at the same time?

Well, that's because the march to the Capitol was the plan all along. And if the testimony is right, fringe right-wing leaders knew it. People in the White House knew it. Twitter employees may have known it.

Donald Trump knew it. In fact, he repeatedly pushed to even join the march.



NICK LUNA, FORMER ASSISTANT TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: I was aware of the desire of the President to potentially march to the - or accompany the rally attendees to the Capitol.


COATES: OK. Of all the people who may have known it, he didn't make those plans public, which might just have given law enforcement, a chance, to prepare that this was going to happen, and in the numbers that it did.

We'll talk to one of the officers, who was attacked at the Capitol in just a moment.

But he knew before January 6th, that a large crowd would march to the Capitol. On what? On the day they were supposed to certify the College results. I mean, look at this draft tweet.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) REP. STEPHANIE MURPHY (D-FL): The committee has obtained this draft, updated - undated tweet from the National Archives. It includes a stamp stating, President has seen.

The draft tweet reads: I will be making a Big Speech at 10 AM on January 6th at the Ellipse (South of the White House). Please arrive early, massive crowds expected. March to the Capitol after. Stop the Steal!


COATES: I mean, presidencies are defined, in critical moments. For Donald Trump, it might come down to those, at least 187 moments.

The 187 minutes, when everyone, from his family, to his advisers, again, the real ones, the people who watched on TV, who were pleading with him. The 187 minutes, when he seemed to have made a conscious decision, not to use the tremendous powers, of the presidency.

And his powers, they were well known to the President of the United States. I mean, he'd used them before, like when he mobilized thousands of National Guard troops, in Washington, D.C., or dispatched unmarked DHS forces, in cities, all across the country, or when he mobilized the military, to the border, while championing them, to use extreme measures.


TRUMP: They are going to use lethal force. I've given the OK.

But, you know, you're dealing with a minimum of 500 serious criminals.


COATES: "A minimum of 500 serious criminals." I'm thinking in my head, all the people, who at least have been charged or investigated, from that particular day, on January 6th.

But serious criminals, he says, as opposed to, like what? The paramilitary forces, moving in formation, or those with body armor, and zip ties on them, walking into the Capitol? Or those whose actions would ultimately leave five dead, and police officers left with life- long injuries?

I wonder why, didn't this warrant a similar mobilization, from the Commander-in-Chief. Maybe he thought it wasn't personal enough?


HUTCHINSON: "They're not here to hurt me. Take that effing mags away. Let my people in. They can march to the Capitol from here."


COATES: Well, look Secret Service, they did not listen to him, OK? They didn't just take the mags away, we're told, or let them all in. They were armed, in some capacity, at least the ones he was referring to, at that moment in time.

But there was a mob that hung on his every word, and tweet, less than a mile away.


MURPHY: What made you decide to leave?

STEPHEN AYRES, CAPITOL RIOTER: Basically, when President Trump put his tweet out, we literally left, right after that come out. You know, to me, if he would have done that earlier in the day, 1:30, I - you know, we wouldn't be in this - maybe we wouldn't be in this bad of a situation, or something.


COATES: Maybe. And if that was the power that he held, I'm wondering why did he wait 187 minutes, to tell them to leave, or at the very least, to stand back and standby?


HUTCHINSON: I recall him being reluctant to film the video.


COATES: So, it actually would take three (ph) times to get a video that finally said this?


TRUMP: Go home. We love you.


COATES: Well, my next guest, was a top investigator, for the January 6th Committee. He left just a few weeks ago, actually, to launch an independent bid, for Senate, in Missouri.

John Wood, thank you for joining me. It's nice to see you.


COATES: Now, John, I have to ask. I mean, I have talked about this important moments. 187 minutes.

Why are they spending, this committee, that part of time, in the next hearing, focusing on that? I mean, what about it, is so encompassing? Is it going to be the most inside look, we've had, to date, about just exactly what the President was doing?


WOOD: I think the 187 minutes were absolutely crucial, because there a lot of questions that the committee is looking into, about why there were security failures, the things that could have been done, in advance, possibly, to stop this attack.

But once the attack was underway, there was really only one person in the world, who had the ability to stop it. And that was Donald Trump. And so, the question is, why didn't he do more to stop it? What was he doing, during that 187 minutes? Was he asked to do something more? And did he refuse? And if he refused, why did he refuse?

And the 187 minutes is kind of looked at it as bookends between when the breach of the Capitol occurred, and when Donald Trump finally issued that statement, asking people to leave.

But, as that clip shows, even that request that people leave, was not very strong. He said something to the effect of "We love you. You're special," and then asked them to leave.

So, there are a lot of questions, about why Donald Trump, who was the one person, who had the ability, to stop the attack, didn't do more sooner.

COATES: I mean, it was not a condemnation. "We love you" does not say, "Stop what you're doing. It's the wrong thing to do." It's kind of the idea of maybe it's the, I don't know, the good parents saying, "You've just destroyed this part of the house. But we still love you?" It's not really the kind of thing you want people to say.

But I do wonder about how much of this is new? A lot of people have been watching, on bated breath, the idea of each of these hearings. And you were a part of this investigative committee, just weeks ago. How much of what we're learning now is new?

And is there a fear? And I know full well, as a prosecutor, primacy and recency. You want to tell them what you're going to tell them. You're going to tell them. You're going to tell them what you just told them. But there is a tendency that redundancy can come into play, and undermine what's happening.

How much of what we're going to hear next will be new?

WOOD: I think we will hear new information. At each one of the hearings, so far, the American people have learned new information, about what happened on and around January 6th. And so, I expect the same to happen, in this last hearing that's going to be coming up next week.

It'd be hard to top the drama of Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony from a couple of weeks ago. So, maybe it won't be the biggest hearing ever. But, I think, it's really going to be significant. And it's going to help fill in those pieces of the puzzle, about what happened on January 6th.

COATES: One of the things we heard about yesterday, from Congresswoman Liz Cheney, was that the former President had called a witness that we've yet to hear from, and that the person I think, did not answer the phone, or didn't go through. They told their attorney who then told the committee about what's going on. There had been some breadcrumbs prior to this that had been laid out, by Congresswoman Cheney, and others, that there was this notion of the "Former President's watching," and the air of sort of intimidation of some kind.

I haven't yet - I don't know who that witness potentially is, and whether it actually is intimidation. But had this been brewing for quite some time on the committee, where it - was it known that there were other aspects, like this that was happening?

WOOD: I think most of this is fairly recent information.

We did hear from Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony that she had been given a message, indirectly, from somebody, who was saying, "We know you'll be loyal," or something to that effect. And then this information that the Vice Chair Liz Cheney just announced, at the most recent hearing.

So, this is new information. It's possible that there have been efforts, all along, to influence witnesses. But I think it's something that either is fairly new, and happening, or recently came to the attention of the committee.

COATES: And finally, John, we're learning a little bit more about the discussions happening, between DOJ and the committee. They are not obviously on the same platform. Their roles are different. One is legislative. One is prosecutorial. There should not be the overlap, essentially, to just maintain the credibility.

But we're learning now that there is more of an effort to share information, at least, from the committee to DOJ. What hadn't - have been happening all along? Any idea? Can you speak to that?

WOOD: Well, yes, these are two separate investigations, with two very different purposes. And each of the investigations is ongoing.

So, I think, the House Select Committee was reluctant, to share any information, while they were in the most active phase, of their investigation. Of course, their investigation is ongoing. But as they're wrapping up these hearings, they're getting towards the end of the active investigation, and starting to focus on report writing.

And so, the Justice Department is going to have to pick things up. They're going to get a lot of evidence, from the committee. But they're also going to get a lot of evidence, through their own investigative tools. And the Justice Department is going to have to make decisions, about whether to bring indictments.

My own personal view, is that that should be as free of politics, as it possibly can be. And I'm concerned that whether the Attorney General decides that charges should be brought, or charges should not be brought, against people, like Donald Trump, and his close associates, that he'll be accused of being political, either way.

[21:15:00] And so, the best thing that he can do, at this point, I believe, is to try to take politics out of it, as much as possible. And the way to do that is to appoint a Special Counsel, somebody who's very highly regarded, and as apolitical as possible, who can conduct an independent investigation, without any influence, or decision-making, from the political appointees, at the Justice Department.

COATES: So not Sidney Powell?

WOOD: Not Sidney Powell, no!

COATES: I got it. Thank you, John Wood. I set you up. Sorry. I mean, my sarcasm was supposed to trend--

WOOD: Thank you, Laura.

COATES: --and like translate, over the airwaves, to you. I guess it did not! But anyway, thank you for being here. I appreciate it.

WOOD: Yes.

COATES: Now, everyone? I want you to--

WOOD: Thank you, Laura.

COATES: --I want you to watch this, and ask yourself. Did it sound like the committee is sending a not so subtle message to the Justice Department?



REP. LIZ CHENEY (R-WY): President Trump is a 76-year-old man. He is not an impressionable child.


COATES: Well, ahead, the pressure building on Merrick Garland, as the DOJ investigation goes on. Legal perspective, and former Trump White House insiders join me, next.



COATES: Hey, this just in. We're getting brand-new reporting, on President Trump's actions, following the January 6th committee's hearings.

Got to go straight to Ryan Nobles, who is on Capitol Hill.

Ryan, what are you learning?

RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Laura, we are learning, tonight, from multiple sources, connected to the January 6th Select Committee that the individual, who Donald Trump is alleged to have called, shortly after Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony, and that person declined, the call, is a member of the White House support staff, a professional support staff that works in the White House, on a daily basis.

And that individual, is someone, who normally was not accustomed, to getting phone calls, from the former President. That's why they declined the call, and then referred the information, to their attorney.

You'll remember Laura, that the committee provided this information, at the end of their hearing, on Tuesday night. They didn't provide any information, about this person's name, or why they believed that there - this was an example of witness intimidation.

But it said that it was something that made them very concerned, and that is why they referred that information to the Department of Justice. This provides us a little bit more context, as to why they were concerned.

This was someone, who was not in regular contact, with the former President. But it is someone, who had unique insight, into what was happening, in the White House, during that period of time, and specifically aspects of Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony that they could either corroborate, or maybe say something different about.

And so, that is why when they received this call, that they were concerned, declined it, and then referred that information to their attorney.

Now, we know that the committee has had some communication, with this individual. We don't know how extensive that communication is. The Chairman of the Select Committee, Bennie Thompson told us earlier today that this person has not been formally deposed.

Now, that is different, Laura. You know this, better than anyone, as an attorney. That's much different than an informal conversation that is not under oath. The committee has had numerous conversations, like that with other witnesses that don't necessarily rise to the level of a deposition, or public testimony, under oath, which we have also seen.

But this is significant. Because it does give us unique insight, into why the committee thought that this was a problem, and why the committee decided to bring that information to light.

Chairman Thompson also told me earlier today that we should expect to learn more, about this phone call, and why they believe it is a problem, in the days and weeks ahead.

So, this is a significant development, something that many people have been trying to figure out, and we can now report that the person, who received this phone call, was a member of the White House support staff, who at least had some knowledge, of Cassidy Hutchinson's testimony.


COATES: Ryan Nobles, well done. Thank you so much.

Let's bring in our panel. Elliot Williams, Olivia Troye, and David Urban.

OK, first of all, they still call this person, a witness. So, my ears pique up, immediately you hear a witness. Not someone, I hadn't heard from before, a member of the White House support staff, we're learning, someone who was not accustomed, to getting calls, from the President, declined the call.

I mean, I would be - I would, my personality, I would have answered it, probably hit record, and had everyone listen to it as well. But that's just me!



COATES: The idea here of having this call come in, what do you think about this?

WILLIAMS: Oh, it's big. But unlike you, Laura, I see any number, I don't recognize, like much to the chagrin of my family, I pretty much screen everything. So, different people, you know? I don't know if I would have taken the call.

Needless to say, look, this is a big deal, for the President's intent, which is the one thing, the big thing, you need to prove, to get to witness tampering? Does the person intend to delay, prevent, hinder, tamper or get in the way of somebody else testifying?

Look, if this were Ivanka Trump, or if it were Mark Meadows, or another person that the President was trying to call, it might not have been so alarming that he was picking up the phone, even if they were to be a witness, in this proceeding. The fact that it appears to be a junior, or support staffer, ought to raise alarm bells, for everyone.

So again, we talked about this just the other day, on the program. Just looking at the identity of who the person might be, could really go far, to getting close to witness tampering, at least investigation.

COATES: I mean, the idea that it's tampering, or the intimidation of some kind, the idea, I mean, it's not the most shocking thing, in the world, right that you're rolling - he's like, "Ah!"


COATES: It's shocking to you--

URBAN: So, look, I love Elliot's enthusiasm, right? But, number one, so if it was a - if it was a support staff person, I'm not quite sure, how they're categorizing that, right?

COATES: Right.


URBAN: I saw Shealah Craighead testified, at some point, who's the White House photographer, right?

COATES: "We haven't heard from her," they said, though. That's a maybe, it's we don't know.

URBAN: Right. So but - but I'm saying so--

COATES: Or him, or him.

URBAN: So, I'm not quite sure who it was.


URBAN: But so just hear me out.


URBAN: So, when they say the President called, and I declined the call, like I have to tell you, like your phone doesn't say - doesn't say "Donald Trump, POTUS" on your phone. So, I'm not quite sure how they knew it was the - "Oh, the President called. I declined," right?

WILLIAMS: Well here's the thing. But here's the thing. They knew--


URBAN: So, I'm not quite sure.


WILLIAMS: --they knew enough to call their lawyer--


WILLIAMS: --when they got the call. And--

URBAN: Again, here's the characterization I just heard.


URBAN: It's someone, who was not used to dealing with the President, not used to being--

COATES: Right.

URBAN: --in those circles, right?


URBAN: So, currently, the President's assistant is Molly Michael, right? So, you'd get a phone call, perhaps, from a number, from either her phone number, or a number that you'd recognize, right?

So, this is why it doesn't kind of - I'm kind of questioning like, how do you know it was the President? How do you know it was the President's assistant? How do you know it was coming from Bedminster, or Mar-a-Lago? I'm not quite sure, how they know that.

COATES: David, you skeptical about something?

URBAN: Listen?

COATES: You skeptical?

URBAN: I'm just saying I--

COATES: This is - this is breaking news! Olivia, though, on this point?


COATES: I mean, you--

TROYE: I will say, when I - when I just heard that, honestly, my first reaction is, "OK, he's worried. He's worried about this, what this person knows." And so that to me stands out. Because why are you reaching out to this individual? What is it about that person? Whatever, they know, whatever they saw whatever they witnessed?

Are they the person - was it the photographer? Are they the person that manages White House Communications, where they know the switchboard, where they know the calls that happened? The calls that didn't - the inaction, the dereliction of duty, there? Do they have first-hand testimony, in terms of that? He's probably aware of that.

Given Cassidy Hutchinson's damning testimony, knowing Trump, they are going down the list, because this is how it works, with this inner circle. I've seen it first-hand. They are going down the list, and say "Who's vulnerable? Who could hurt? What information do these people know? And we got to get to them first," is what I'm thinking. That's where my thinking went.


URBAN: Again, I just don't know how he know it's the President.

WILLIAMS: Yes, no, no, no, no, no.


COATES: But I don't know. OK. Let's just assume--

URBAN: It's like they figured something.

COATES: I hear you.

URBAN: I'm in the house, right? (CROSSTALK)

URBAN: It's like one of those voices now.

TROYE: Yes, yes.

COATES: You're right. We don't - I don't have enough. I mean, I couldn't charge this at all.

WILLIAMS: No, of course, not.

COATES: But let's assume, for sake of argument, there is some foundational reason that they knew that it was the President of the United States.


COATES: OK. Let's assume that for a second.


COATES: I know, it's an assumption. And they have to connect the dots, for me, as well. If that's the case, should he be worried?

WILLIAMS: Yes. And look, and I want to be clear. He's not - Donald Trump's not getting arrested, tomorrow, for witness tampering.

TROYE: Right.

WILLIAMS: And I'm with you, Laura. You could not charge this, right now.

But look, I was at the Justice Department, a long time, and I've dealt with witness tampering cases. And during an ongoing proceeding, number one, you have the Justice Department investigating all this.

Number two, there was a hearing, yesterday, or the day before, in which a number of witnesses, came forward. And it's ongoing. And a call from someone, who might be the target, or subject, of this, to a junior staffer? No man! Ah-ah!

COATES: But is he--

WILLIAMS: That - it is at least suspicious, at a minimum--

URBAN: I think of all the dots--


URBAN: --and of all the dots they're trying to - this committee is trying to connect, right, on these hearings?


URBAN: They get more tenuous and tenuous, right? I mean, this is, like - again, we don't know, if the President called, was it his assistant that called? Who knows what the President was going to say? They didn't take the call. How do you know what he was going to say? You can't charge him with anything.

COATES: I really feel like, David, this may have been a song, called "It Wasn't Me," by a man named Shaggy. I really - a part of me wants this soundtrack, playing for the airwaves.

URBAN: By the way, that is a good song.

WILLIAMS: And it's a--

COATES: And it's a good song. But it could very well be the next step in this.

URBAN: It's good karaoke song.

COATES: I don't know your karaoke style. If you're doing that?

WILLIAMS: Good songs (ph).

COATES: I'm going to be there for it.

But I have a lot of ifs. If it were the President that actually called, if the President knew this person was a witness? Mind you, we haven't heard from the person yet. So, we don't yet know.

TROYE: Right.

COATES: Again, this is why, I want to hear what the call was.


COATES: But it made - raise enough alarms, to have them contact their attorneys, and to be able to then tell the committee.

And again, there's been breadcrumbs before, about the idea of the subtle ways of "Hey, so and so is watching. Want you to know they're watching you." Innuendo is not going to cut it, at the end of the day, in a legal courtroom.

URBAN: I just--


URBAN: Again, I sat here, for the first impeachment, the second impeachment. "Bombshell! Indictment, tomorrow," right? Never comes.

WILLIAMS: I'm just picturing, "Seditious conspiracy? It wasn't me! Witness tampering? It wasn't me! Obstruction against the United States? It wasn't me!"

COATES: Why is yours a Frank Sinatra rendition?

WILLIAMS: Well, no - damn it, Laura! Come on!

COATES: I'm just kidding. Stick around. We'll choose everyone's karaoke songs in a moment!

We're going to continue this conversation, after a quick break. I'm going to hear them, all sing.



COATES: All right, let's bring back Elliot Williams, Olivia Troye, and David Urban.

We've got some pretty big news out, from Ryan Nobles, saying that it seemed to be a White House staffer, they believe, who was the person that received a call, they did not accept, told their attorneys about it. They then told the DOJ.

Olivia, you mentioned that you think whoever it is, no matter what happened, it indicates the President was scared. I mean, you know how this White House operated. And the idea of assuming this was the President that called, what makes you think that they're so frightened?

TROYE: I think it's paranoia by him. I think they're concerned. I think that they're worried that somebody's going to corroborate, what Cassidy Hutchinson said, in her testimony. I think that may be part of it.

Look, and I think it's twofold, too. I think that individual's probably nervous and scared, too. I mean, I think that's probably why they referred it to their attorney. I mean, I think they're probably concerned. They're worried about what happens next.

If the president - if the former President's calling you, it's probably not for a good thing. Especially, during the hearing, we saw that there had been threatening messages, and messages of intimidation, to some of the witnesses, they displayed.

And so, I think when you take that all into context, I'm thinking, he's thinking, OK, who else knows about this that can justify it or corroborate her information, and make it look even worse for him?

COATES: I mean, you're nodding along. You think there's fear, at some point?

URBAN: Look, again, I don't think the - I mean, I don't think the President fears much, unfortunately, right? I really don't.

TROYE: Valid point.

URBAN: I just don't - I don't. I don't think the President fears much. I don't think he looks at it, and sits back. I don't think he's sitting back, at home, saying, "I'm afraid of this or that."

I don't think he - think he looks at this as a challenge. I think he looks at this, you know, he has been through all these impeachments. And nothing's happened. And every day, as I said before, right? There was "Indictment coming down. This is going to be the end of Donald Trump. Here it comes now. No, wait till tomorrow. It's the end," right?

So again, I think, Donald Trump's sits and looks at this and says, "OK, very interesting." I think most Republicans that I've sat across America aren't paying attention. They're not tuned in. They're kind of - they think this is like, first impeachment, the second impeachment. They think this is just kind of a, more of the same. And--

COATES: I don't - I don't - I mean, I don't want to talk - but I want you explain what can I - a part of me just can't buy that. I mean, I understand the idea of a--

URBAN: Like, well, yes.

COATES: --the presumption of a partisan witch-hunt. I get that. But, I mean, up until a few months ago, I mean, Liz Cheney, is no - is not really a RINO.

URBAN: Right.


COATES: Adam Kinzinger, I mean, is a Republican, I mean. And these are Republicans, who are testifying.

URBAN: I don't--

COATES: That doesn't matter, you think?

URBAN: Listen, I don't dispute any of that, right? And I think that some of the testimony that we've heard is very compelling, right? Watching some of these folks, come up there, and say their piece. I don't think they're not telling the truth. I believe everyone's telling the truth. I just think it doesn't matter to a large amount of people.

I think that, again, they're weighing. They're looking at their current economic circumstances, their circumstances in their life, right? The previous - some previous segments today said, "Look how bad Americans are feeling about the economy, about the future of our country, about all these things."

And they weigh that against this guy, Donald Trump, "Well, he may have done some things wrong. I know he's not perfect. But things were better then. My 401(k) was better. My, you know, I could fix my washing machine. We didn't have all these bad things happening." I just think that that's how people will live in the real world, right?

And they're not - they're not - there are a great deal of people that are concerned, about what happened, on January 6th, right? They do find it troubling. But that - I don't think they make the connection directly that there's a nexus, between Donald Trump, saying "Do this," and then people, breaking through the windows of the Capitol.

WILLIAMS: Well, no. URBAN: They're grown adults!

WILLIAMS: But that's not - here's the thing. So, talk about the first impeachment, which was, I think--


WILLIAMS: --a little more abstract international, people didn't have their heads around it.

There was a concrete act that happened on January 6th. And it's not just charging people, breaking through the wall.

You are talking about - when we were having our throwback to 2002, I named two or three crimes. There's still also obstruction of justice, intimidating an officer. I just wrote these down, obstruction of an official proceeding, obstruction of Congress. All of these crimes that came up, in connection with January 6th.

And so, it's a fair criticism that you have vandalism charges and destruction of property. But a whole number of crimes that people watched on television, took place.


WILLIAMS: So, I don't, you know, I think it's fair that Trump derangement, going back to the first impeachment, is something that maybe people don't really have much use for, anymore. But this is something different.

COATES: Well, we'll see. I mean, obviously, the committee's job is to help enlighten and give the information. They're not prosecutorial.


COATES: But their job will be to essentially speak to the court of the public electorate.

Thank you, everyone. We'll be back in a moment, everyone.

But what we - what do you, and what do we all make of this moment? I mean, this one, when a convicted rioter, went over, to some of the officers, and apologized. Is this committee doing enough, do you think, to investigate, how so many officers, were even put at risk?

Well, one of those officers are going to join me next, and talk about it.



COATES: Stephen Ayres says he was a family man, with a stable job, before taking part in the January 6th attack. But after buying into the 2020 election lies, he says, he answered President Trump's call, to come to Washington, and march on the Capitol. After testifying yesterday, Ayres apologized, to some of the officers, who were assaulted, by that mob. And that includes Michael Fanone. He's also the Author of a book, coming out, this October. It's called "Hold the Line: The Insurrection and One Cop's Battle for America's Soul."

Michael, good to see you. I mean, I have to know, what your reaction to that moment was. I was watching it, in real-time, watching all of you. And I wondered what you were thinking, in particular.

MICHAEL FANONE, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST, FORMER D.C. METROPOLITAN POLICE DEPARTMENT OFFICER, AUTHOR, "HOLD THE LINE": I really wasn't thinking anything. I was caught off guard. Yes, I definitely was not prepared for that. No one had let us know that that was going to take place.

And, I think, a lot is being made about that moment. And I don't know. I'm more concerned with focusing on, the future of our democracy, and ensuring the security of this country.

I think there's time, for Kumbaya, and holding hands. We can do that later, after we've held people accountable, for January 6th, and for the crimes that were committed that led to January 6th.

COATES: In a way, what you describe is pretty selfless, in line with what you would expect, from a police officer, who would think, it's not about me. It's about what's happening around.

But to date, we have seven hearings in. We haven't really heard much, except for that very first public hearing, many months ago, from officers, like yourself, testifying, on the Hill.

Do you think that the committee has given enough attention, to what you all faced that day, and any shortcomings, about why there was such an outmanned and outgunned and outweaponed force, though that day?

FANONE: I mean, yes, and no, like the committee dedicated, an entire hearing, to officer testimony. They also included Caroline Edwards testimony, in the first of the, I guess, most recent set of hearings. So, I guess, in that regard, I mean, they have represented law enforcement, proportionate to the other hearings that they've had.

But that being said, I don't think law enforcement's contributions to securing the Capitol, on January 6th, have been appreciated, appropriately, by anyone. Most importantly, the current administration.

COATES: On that note, and I want to hear more about that, I want to play for you, what Sergeant Gonell - we know that he is an officer, who sustained injuries that are unable to be overcome. He cannot return to the force.

We watched him. It was heartbreaking, to see the reaction, even now that he cannot be a part of what he wanted to do.

Let's listen. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SGT. AQUILINO GONELL, U.S. CAPITOL POLICE: It's a life-changing moment for me. I mean, I had to plan now, how instead of celebrating a promotion that I - since I passed the lieutenant test, now I have to plan my retirement, and my life with those injuries.

When I leave the department, it's not under my own terms.


COATES: I mean, what is your reaction? You say that this administration, as well, not doing enough, to appreciate and recognize. I mean, could more be done, to recognize, say, what's happened to him? I mean, he's not leaving on his own terms. He was forced out, based on what happened, on January 6th, to him, and so many others.


FANONE: Yes, I mean, I know Gonell, personally, obviously. And, I mean, I'm pretty well-versed, in his experience.

Unfortunately, it's the - it's very similar, to many officers' experiences, when they suffer career-ending injuries. He's had to jump through a lot of hoops, with the U.S. Capitol Police. I mean, it's very similar experience with my former department.

Unfortunately, the agency isn't a hand-holding, loving entity. It's just an agency. And it works the same, as most government agencies. It's indifferent to the personal experiences, of its employees.

COATES: Wow! What could the administration be doing?

FANONE: I mean, listen, the police officers that responded, on January 6th, are solely responsible, for the safety and security of the members of Congress that day, their staff.

Yes, we lost lives. Fortunately, it was only a few lost lives. However tragic, we did not lose any members of Congress, which we've seen over these hearings was the intended goal of many of those, who came to the Capitol that day.

I was disappointed to see that President Biden didn't include any members of the Metropolitan Police Department, or the U.S. Capitol Police, for that matter, in his recent honoring of, or awarding of Presidential Medals of Freedom. I know that the Congressional Medal was given, but only really, in an honorary fashion.

We give awards, in the military and, in law enforcement, for a purpose. And it's to recognize the sacrifices, of the individual officers, members of the military, and their efforts. And unfortunately, it's just fallen by the wayside. Whether it's political, or whether it's just, indifference, or moving on to more important matters.

COATES: Michael Fanone, it's important to hear from you. Thank you.

FANONE: Thank you, Ma'am.

COATES: Thank you.

Well, I wonder, will these be your choices in 2024? They look awfully familiar, don't they? Well, look, new polling shows that neither of these men should assume anything is certain.

The surprises, in the numbers, next.




YONIT LEVI, CHANNEL 12 NEWS ISRAEL: Are you predicting a Biden-Trump rematch, 2024?

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT, UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I'm not predicting. But I - I would - I would not be disappointed.


COATES: Well, Biden says that he wouldn't be disappointed, in a 2020 rematch, in 2024. But is it what America wants?

David Urban is back with me, along with former Democratic congressman, Joe Kennedy.

Joe, David, I'm glad you're here.

I'm going to start with you. Do people want that rematch?

JOE KENNEDY, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR, (D) FORMER U.S. REPRESENTATIVE: I certainly want Joe Biden to be our president, in 2024 through 2028.

And look, that decision as to what former President Trump is going to do, is up to Donald Trump, and then it's up to Republicans, to decide whether they believe that their standard-bearer, should be Donald Trump, yet again. And--

COATES: I mean, is it a good thing if he - if Trump runs, if that's the rematch? Or is it the idea of, it's Biden and Trump, and Biden, if it's Trump? But if it's not Trump, anyone else?

KENNEDY: Look, I think it's a disaster for our country, if Donald Trump sets foot, in American politics, for another second. So, no, I don't think it's a good thing for the country.

I do think tactically, for the President, President Biden, that is, one of the President's greatest strengths? You talk to almost any Republican, they will tell you it's his decency. He is a good man. They'd disagree with his politics, and policies. But he is a good man. I believe one of the central reasons why President Biden won the presidency was because of the contrast between his decency, and his dignity, and his respect for other people, versus the chaos and disrespect and obscenity that is Donald Trump. And it characterizes much of the comments that you heard earlier, in the show. And so, I actually think that matchup accrues to President Biden's benefit, enormously.

COATES: Well that but--

URBAN: Yes. I was going to say--

COATES: --there's decency, then there's inflation.

URBAN: I was going to say, there's decency. Look--

COATES: I mean--

URBAN: --Joe Biden ran on a bunch of promises, and a bunch of things that he's going to do.

And he's, look, he's a very nice person, right? No one's going to - no, I'm not going to knock Joe Biden as an individual. But he's doing a terrible job as president, right? You could be a nice guy, and still be a terrible president. And he's doing a terrible job. And, I think, the poll numbers show that clearly.

He ran on being a uniter, bringing people together, right, bringing America together? "I'm not going to have this divisiveness in America." It became more divisive, right?

I think people wanted - if Biden would have come in, and done, "Build Back Better," and just done a couple small things, instead of trying to do this incredibly progressive agenda? You guys would have been in power, for 100 years. Instead, he came and he tried to do too much, and he didn't get anything done. And now, you have--

COATES: You don't have an opinion about this, at all, right?


KENNEDY: I think there is. Let's correct that record.


COATES: No response to that issue, at all.

KENNEDY: Let' correct the record. So first off, he came in, in the midst of a massive global pandemic disaster.

URBAN: Oh! Oh, Trump lost in the massive pandemic--


URBAN: --global pandemic.

KENNEDY: And so, he came in. And they passed a massive rescue package.


KENNEDY: COVID is now far down people's concerns because the government response.

URBAN: And Trump - because of the Trump vaccine!

KENNEDY: And Trump deserves - his administration deserves credit, for the development of those vaccines.

URBAN: Right.

KENNEDY: But with regards to a vaccine rollout, it was a disaster, under the former President, right? President Biden, I think that the administration has done a much better job there. They then passed the largest investment, in our nation's infrastructure, or in modern history, in infrastructure.

Every week, for four years, under Donald Trump, was infrastructure week. It became literally a tagline and a joke, right?

URBAN: Right. And so--

KENNEDY: The President has continued - he came in in a mess. He's continued to deliver.

The fact is that if we had Republicans that were willing to address some of these major issues, between climate, between longer-term investments, taking on China?

They are now holding hostage, a China - a supply chain bill, to try to strengthen American manufacturing, to saying, "If you do something on climate and lower healthcare costs, we're not going to work with you on a bill that we passed." That's crazy!

COATES: You're bobble heading to it.

URBAN: But you're - I was going to say--

COATES: What's going on?


URBAN: --Congressman, you can say - you can say all those great talking points. And they're great, right? I - listen?

COATES: You got a attaboy, with that!

URBAN: But listen? I'm saying--


COATES: With that.

URBAN: --he's good. He's good. Listen, he's really good at it. But the American people aren't buying it, right? It's simple as that, right? They're just not buying it. They're not buying it. They're just not buying it.


URBAN: And that's why you're going to see all your former colleagues be unemployed, in a few months, right? They're going to all be looking for jobs, because nobody in America wants this agenda that's being pursued, by the Biden administration. They just don't.

Otherwise, you wouldn't be losing all these seats. There wouldn't be this fear, amongst Democrats, nationwide. There wouldn't be people looking for a new standard-bearer, other than Joe Biden, in 2024.

KENNEDY: So Laura, the poll that you referenced, actually has Democrats up 41-40, in a national poll.

URBAN: Well it's one poll--

COATES: 41--

URBAN: --New York Times/Siena, one point.

COATES: 41-40, not that great. But go ahead.

KENNEDY: Not that great. But that - it's a poll that has basically even.

And as disastrous as my good friend here says, things are, for the current president? He beats Donald Trump, in that poll!

COATES: Well, I mean, that may have been a--

URBAN: But well let's assume--


COATES: No, that may have been the mic drop. Hold on!


COATES: You gave him the attaboy. Got to get down.

URBAN: Well done.

COATES: Joe Kennedy, David Urban, thank you so much.

We'll be right back.


COATES: Hey, thanks for watching, everybody. I'll be back, tomorrow.

"DON LEMON TONIGHT" starts with, right now, of course, Don Lemon.

Hey, Don?