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The Situation Room
Biden Agenda Faces Make-Or-Break Week; Supreme Court Issues Landmark Ruling Against NCAA;; New York City's Mayoral Primary Race Jolted By Late Twist As Rivals Yang And Garcia Campaign Together; "Washington Post:" Trump Is Keeping Allen Weisselberg Close As CFO May Face Charges, Is Under Pressure To Flip; Ten New Mass Shootings Across U.S. Over Weekend Leave At Least Seven Dead And 45 Wounded. Aired 6-7p ET
Aired June 21, 2021 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: The explosion registered as a magnitude 3.9 earthquake. The carrier is scheduled to undergo maintenance in modernization before it is fully deployed.
Our coverage continues now with one Mr. Wolf Blitzer right next door in "THE SITUATION ROOM." I'll see you tomorrow.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: Happening now, President Biden's agenda and legacy are on the line as he kicks off a make or break week for his most urgent legislative priorities.
CNN has learned who the Trump Justice Department was initially targeting with a secret subpoena that wounded getting information about two key Democratic lawmakers.
And the U.S. Supreme Court delivers a unanimous smack down to the NCAA, paving the way for now payments to college athletes. Basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar standing by to join us live to discuss this landmark ruling.
Welcome to our viewers here in the United States and around the world. I'm Wolf Blitzer and you're in The Situation Room.
Let's begin with the Biden agenda truly at a cross roads right now. Our Chief White House Correspondent Kaitlan Collins is covering it all for us. Kaitlan, some truly important negotiations are happening right now. Update our viewers. What can you tell us?
KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Wolf. This is between the group of bipartisan senators that are behind this latest infrastructure proposal that is circulating around Capitol Hill. They are meeting behind closed doors right now as we speak. And, of course, they are still in disagreement with the White House over one major aspect of this bill, which is how to pay for it. And it is also a blueprint that we should note is pitting the more moderate Democrats in their party against the more liberal wing of the Democratic Party.
COLLINS (voice over): It's the start of a critical week for President Biden's agenda.
JEN PSAKI, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Certainly he'd like to move forward sooner rather than later.
COLLINS: The White House is facing a new hurdle tonight on infrastructure as a new bipartisan agreement on Capitol Hill is coming under fire from progressives.
REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ (D-NY): If a bipartisan deal sucks up trillions of dollars and bridges to nowhere because it makes people feel good, then that will be a huge concern.
COLLINS: Some Democrats like, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, say they fear that if Biden makes a deal with Republicans, moderate Democrats won't support a bigger bill that would require complete Democratic support.
MANU RAJU, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Have you gotten a commitment from Senators Manchin and Sinema that would back a party line vote via reconciliation?
SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): I'm not going to get into my individual talks with members. We all know we have got to come together or nothing gets done.
COLLINS: As questions about how to pay for an infrastructure bill go unanswered, Biden will sit down with lawmakers in person this week.
PSAKI: The door to the Oval Office is always open he'll be deeply involved and engage in these negotiations over the coming days.
COLLINS: Another divide facing Democrats is a fight over voting rights.
SCHUMER: There will be a vote on Tuesday.
COLLINS: Senator Chuck Schumer is pledging to move forward on a debate on a voting right bill that some Democrats are even skeptical of even though it has no support from Republicans.
SCHUMER: It's a very simple vote. It just means to proceed to debate it. It's hard to believe Republicans won't even vote to proceed to debate it.
COLLINS: To pass voting right legislation with only Democrats, the party would have to destroy the Senate filibuster, which requires 60 votes for anything to pass.
PSAKI: If the vote is unsuccessful tomorrow, we suspect it will prompt a new conversation about the path forward.
COLLINS: Tonight, former President Obama is slamming Republicans for planning to use the filibuster to stop consideration of voting rights legislation. BARACK OBAMA, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT (voice over): Republicans of the Senate are lining up to try to use the filibuster to stop the For the People Act from even being debated.
COLLINS: The former president even invoking the January 6th attack on the Capitol.
OBAMA (voice over): In the aftermath of an insurrection, with our democracy on the line and many of these same Republican senators going along with the notion that somehow there were irregularities and problems with legitimacy in our most recent election, they're suddenly afraid to even talk about these issues and figure out solutions on the floor of the Senate. They don't even want to talk about voting.
COLLINS: This week, President Biden is also expected to address an alarming spike in violent crime across the U.S. and his plan to fix it.
PSAKI: It is an area where the president feels a great deal of the crime we're seeing as a result of gun violence.
COLLINS (on camera): And, Wolf, we should note that today, behind closed doors, the president did meet with financial regulators, including the Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell, for the first time meeting in person. The White House said after that meeting that the financial regulators told him, told the president that they believe the financial system is in, quote, strong condition right now. Of course, that comes if you saw U.S. stocks soaring today upon close, including the Dow getting its best day since March.
BLITZER: Yes, up almost 600 points today, very impressive.
All right, Kaitlan, stay with us. I want to bring in our Chief Political Correspondent Dana Bash and our Congressional Correspondent Ryan Nobles.
Ryan, you are there, you are up on the Hill. Just how high are the stakes during what so many of us see as a potential make or break week?
RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Wolf. I don't think there is any doubt that this is a week that's going to be so important to the Biden administration. It is not as though we might get firm resolution on these three big issues that you were talking about earlier, infrastructure, police reform and voting rights, but at the very least, I think the Senate needs to take some positive steps in a direction where you're going to see some type of resolution because they're frankly running out of time.
They only have one more week in this session before they take a long break before a lot of work needs to be done in the weeks and months ahead. Now, no one thinks that they're on the precipice of getting a deal on any of these three issues, but there is the real chance that one or more of the bargaining partners could walk away from the table, for instance, on something like police reform or on this bipartisan infrastructure deal that they're in the midst of hashing out.
So there is a lot at stake this week. You sense that the White House understands that, that they're firmly engaged in this topic. And you also get that feeling here in Capitol Hill where, even tonight that group of bipartisan lawmakers is going to huddle behind closed doors trying to get closer to an infrastructure package that they can present to the rest of the Senate with the hopes that it can pass.
BLITZER: Very impressive. You know, tomorrow's vote, Dana, on voting rights, it's a huge, huge test. Set the scene for us.
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: It is a huge test. Look, nobody thinks that there is any chance that there will be the 60 votes needed to break a Republicans filibuster. No Republicans, not even one, has said they support the large, sweeping bill on election reform, which includes things like campaign finance reform in addition to ending partisan gerrymandering, never mind protecting voting rights across the country.
But the question is what happens from there? Because, first and foremost, what happens with regard to votes needed just to at least start debate and how the Democrats are at least going to come together on that, that's going to be a telltale sign. But Joe Manchin, who has become the center of things on this issue, as well as others, has to scale down a plan, which even Stacey Abrams in Georgia, who is kind of the pillar of voting rights when it comes to the progressive cause, says that she's okay with.
So the question is going to be what happens, not if, but when the Democrats fail on their sweeping bill, how much will they get behind Joe Manchin's proposal? Because they need every single Democratic vote and they have to convince progressives that it's okay.
Bernie Sanders told me yesterday that he didn't say yes he would be okay with the compromise, but he didn't say no. He's definitely left the door open.
BLITZER: Yes, that was really significant as well. You know, Kaitlan, President Biden named Vice President Kamala Harris to spearhead voting rights, but will this vote show just how little power they potentially have over what so many see as an existential issue for democracy?
COLLINS: I think it will. And this is something that we have kind of known for months now, Wolf, dating back to President Biden's first press conference. And we were talking about the idea that it just seemed really difficult that they were -- this idea that they were ever going to get Republicans onboard, onboard with any kind of voting rights legislation that Democrats were pleased with.
And this is something that he knew then. He talked on how he was going to do everything in his power to try to get that voting rights legislation passed. Of course, that now seems all but guaranteed to not go anywhere. And so they have the vice president in charge here. And I think what the tactic that they have been left with right now is they can get all Democrats onboard, which is not something that seems guaranteed at this point. Then they can say, we're not going to have a legislative victory but we can have a symbolic victory here.
And we can go out and say, look, it was the Republican who voted against this. We had all of the Democrats onboard, and that would be a more effective messaging tool for the vice president. But the idea that she's going to find these ten votes on Capitol Hill, the White House knows that that's just not going to happen, Wolf.
BLITZER: In this week, Dana, as you know, it is a really critical week for President Biden's hopes to get this infrastructure plan going. But if he compromises too much, is he potentially going to lose progressives from his own party?
BASH: Yes, he will. And that's why there is kind of a two-track situation going on here. You have the moderates dealing with the more narrow infrastructure bill, which is roads and bridges and things like that and then you have the progressives going through Bernie Sanders' committee looking at a huge package. I mean, he's looking, Wolf, at $6 trillion, with a T, dollar package. That's even bigger than the $4 trillion package that President Biden proposed.
So it's kind of dancing on the head of a pin trying to keep progressives in line and say, look, we are going to address your issues in a later bill but not scare off the moderates.
It's about as difficult as it gets. And again, we are just talking about Democrats. This is all within the Democratic Party.
BLITZER: Ryan, what are you hearing from your sources up there among Democrats if potentially the president, if he compromises too much, might lose some of these progressives?
NOBLES: Dana is absolutely right. The more Republicans you add, the chances are that there are another group of Democrats that you could possibly subtract. And it's a problem on the Senate side, but senators believe that if the White House endorses this plan that most senators will get in line.
It may be a bigger problem in the House where if they pass this infrastructure package in the Senate, it will have to go back over to the House to be passed and the progressive caucus on the House side is a lot more willing to buck their leadership and Nancy Pelosi only has a four vote margin right now in the House.
And if she loses four progressive because they're concerned, A, that this bipartisan package isn't enough and, B, that they can't be guaranteed that those moderate Democrats are going to support a much bigger reconciliation package, they may walk away from the entire situation.
So that's why Roy Blunt, the Senator from Missouri, said it may be easier to get 12 Republican votes than it is to get one or two Democratic votes to break up the filibuster. It is such a narrow margin of error that the White House and Democrats have here on Capitol Hill.
BLITZER: Democrat have a four-point margin in the House, 50/50 in the Senate, it doesn't get much closer than that. Guys, thank you very, very much.
Just ahead, a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling that could shape the multibillion-dollar world of college sports. We're going to discuss the impact with the NBA legend, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. There you see him. He's standing by live. He's got strong views on what's going on.
BLITZER: A potential game changer for many student athletes tonight, a unanimous U.S. Supreme Court ruling opening the door for them to receive significantly more money from the multibillion-dollar college sports industry.
Let's discuss this with the NBA legend, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Kareem, thanks so much for joining us. So what is your reaction to this Supreme Court ruling? How big of a potential game changer is it?
KAREEM ABDUL-JABBAR, NBA LEGEND: Well, I think it's a very good thing for college athletes, especially the people that go and just do it for the fun of it. You know, a lot of them, it uses up all their time and they have to make the choice sometimes between getting good grades and doing what they are at the school to do.
So with the some kind of remuneration, they will be able to get a nice apartment, hopefully, or put a down payment on a car. Their lives don't have to be so constricted by the rules of amateur status.
BLITZER: Yes, that's absolutely true. And you have actually said, Kareem, that college athletes are being exploited and should be paid. This ruling only applies to what are described as education-related payments. But is it just a first step towards fixing a broken system?
ABDUL-JABBAR: I hope it fixes the system because just two sports that make all this money, that's basketball and football, and from that income, they can pay all these coaches millions of dollars, people who work for the NCAA, they have nice salaries, and the other people who don't get any really significant pay from all the money that's made are the people who make the money, and that's the athletes. That's wrong.
BLITZER: Yes. I totally --
ABDUL-JABBAR: So I hope -- I see what's happening is righting a wrong and we should be able to go on from there.
BLITZER: Yes. It's certainly a critically important first step for the U.S. Supreme Court with this unanimous decision. I recently, the other day, spoke with Duke's retiring Coach Krzyzewski. I want you to watch what he told me about the future of college sports. So that's a subject he clearly knows well.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI, DUKE MEN'S BASKETBALL COACH: It does need an overhaul. There's no question. And it's a result of not doing overhauls along the way. And now, there is a major one. And with NIL coming in to play, transfers and all that, it really needs really centralized leadership, because at the end of the day, men's college basketball, it's a billion business and it has to be run a little bit more like a business.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BLITZER: What do you think, Kareem? Do you agree?
ABDUL-JABBAR: I absolutely agree with Coach Krzyzewski. And I think that by giving the players a fair amount of the money that they make, everything will even out. The good schools will still be better than the schools that don't know how to recruit or don't know how to play. And that's going to be the result. But at least the people that play and put their bodies at risk, they will get some pay and hopefully they will have a guaranteed of scholarship until they graduate.
You know, a lot of players would lose their scholarship if they got injured. The only way that they could collect any kind of insurance would be if they couldn't play anything, you know, totally crippled for the rest of their life, and, of course, that doesn't happen very often. So it wasn't a very useful -- it wasn't a very useful situation. It really just benefitted the school.
BLITZER: I remember when you were playing college basketball at UCLA, I'm old enough to remember that, and it was pretty exciting, did you ever think in those days when you were in college and you were doing great basketball you should be paid?
ABDUL-JABBAR: Yes, I did. I had an adviser that told me -- he was aware of how much money we generated, and he had a chance to talk to the athletic director at UCLA.
And, you know, had a good idea of the amount of money involved. And then he explained to me that I was definitely being exploited. But there is nothing I could do about it because of the legal situation. But now that the legal situation has changed, I'm very happy for this era's college athlete, and I wish them well. And I hope they continue to be college athletes. A student athlete is one great designation, and it's should to appeal to the young men and women who want to go to college and do something extra.
BLITZER: Yes, I totally agree with you, Kareem. Thank you so much, thanks for joining us, as usual. We'll continue this conversation down the road. ABDUL-JABBAR: Nice talking to you, Wolf.
BLITZER: Thank you. And we're going to tell our viewers what CNN has uncovered about the Trump Justice Department's motive for secretly seizing records of two Democratic Congressmen and the former White House Counsel. Stay with us. You're in the situation room.
BLITZER: Right now, we have new information about the secret subpoena that allowed the Trump Justice Department to seize data on two Democratic congressmen as well as the former White House Counsel. Let's go to Senior Legal Affairs Correspondent Paula Reid. Paula, tell our viewers what you have learned.
PAULA REID, CNN SENIOR LEGAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Good evening, Wolf. Well, the CNN justice team has done extensive reporting to uncover why the Trump Justice Department secretly subpoenaed two records of two Democratic Congressmen and the former White House Counsel. Now, sources tell CNN these men were not individually targeted and their records were actually swept up into leak investigations into other people. But this new reporting raises serious concerns about how the Justice Department gathers up your data.
REID (voice over): Tonight, CNN has learned the Trump Justice Department likely swept up the records of two Congressional Democrats and former President Trump's top lawyer as part of investigations into other people. Sources tell CNN that the Justice Department originally sent a secret subpoena to Apple in 2018 as part of a leak investigation that included scrutiny of a senior aide on the House Intelligence Committee.
Apple was ordered to hand over customer or subscriber account information to help identify people connected with the staffer. Apple provided what it had on the accounts, including names. The tech company was barred from disclosing the requests until earlier this year. But what is not clear is who else investigators told at the Justice Department that they had records connected to key lawmakers who were political adversaries of then-President Trump.
DONALD TRUMP, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: I think it was leaks from the Intelligence Committee, House -- House version. And I think that they leaked it. I think probably Schiff leaked it.
REID: Congressman Schiff has cried foul over his data being seized.
REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): Over the last four years, the Department of Justice was horribly politicized.
REID: It was a similar scenario in regard to then-White House Counsel Don McGahn and his wife, who also had their records secretly obtained in February 2018. A source says that McGahn's records were also obtained as part of a leak investigation where he was not the target, but it is unclear what happened once his records were obtained.
The request came as Trump was unhappy with McGahn for refusing to order the firing of Special Counsel Robert Mueller. The Trump Justice Department also secretly sought records from journalists at CNN, The Washington Post and The New York Times. The Justice Department's office of inspector general is now investigating the secret seizure of information from lawmakers and journalist during the Trump administration.
REP. ERIC SWALWELL (D-CA): And no investigation into me or others took place. That's why it looks so targeted, that it was timed to when Chairman Schiff and myself were raising concerns about President Trump's connections to the Russians.
REID: In a statement, Attorney General Garland said, there are important questions that must be resolved in connection with an effort by the department to obtain records related to members of Congress and congressional staff and that he has instructed his Deputy attorney general, Lisa Monaco, to evaluate and strengthen the department's existing policies and procedures for obtaining records of a legislative branch. But Congressman Schiff wants Garland to go further.
SCHIFF: I think he really needs to do a wholesale review of all the politicization of the department in the last four years.
REID (on camera): Now the inspector general investigations will likely take over a year. And in the meantime, based on our reporting, the question remains how the Justice Department can secretly sweep up the data of two lawmakers and the top lawyer for the presidency without senior officials knowing. And if that happens, the three of the most powerful men in America at the time, how worried should other Americans be about their information. Wolf?
BLITZER: That's a good question, a really important one. Paula, thank you very much.
Let's discuss with a Congressman Jason Crow, he's a Democrat, he serves on the House Intelligence Committee. Congressman, thanks for joining us.
Even if this investigation wasn't directly targeting sitting members of Congress, your own colleagues, is that an excuse, any excuse for these aggressive Justice Department tactics?
REP. JASON CROW (D-CO): No, Wolf, it's not. I mean, this isn't a policy dispute. I think we have to be clearly clear about this.
This isn't differences of opinion about monetary policy or the best way to fund infrastructure or K-12 education. This is anti-democratic behavior that was pervasive under the Trump administration. Whether it was intentional or unintentional, whether it got swept up or whether it was specifically targeted, it is all part of the pattern and practice that we saw under that four years as anti-democratic, it's extremely dangerous.
And that's why we have to do things like pass the Protecting Our Democracy Act so that we're not just relying on people's good graces in the future, we're actually putting some guard rails in place.
BLITZER: Have you gotten, Congressman, from the attorney general on the scope of this behavior by the Trump Justice Department?
CROW: The DOJ had reached out to the intelligence committee and briefed the leadership of the committee and the staff on the number of folks that were included in the subpoenas and the content of that information. And I'm not going to go into that right now because there is an internal review, an inspector general review, that's ongoing, as there should be. But, you know, I think we have to make sure we are doing a full investigation, whether that's through the DOJ I.G. or through the House Intelligence Committee, likely DOJ, to get some answers here.
BLITZER: How important would it be, do you believe, for Congress to hear testimony under oath from Bill Barr, Jeff Sessions and Rod Rosenstein?
CROW: I think it's really important. And it's not just because this is an exercise in history. I mean, listen, I like history just as much as the next person and I like to make sure that history is accurate and that were getting in all out there for folks to see and to learn from. But this is about looking forward as well, learning what happened so we can prevent it from happening again.
And there has to be consequences. I'm a firm believer in accountability. When people do things that are illegal, that are anti- democratic, there needs to be accountability so that in the future, if somebody is thinking about doing the same thing, they're going to think twice. We have to impose some costs on people here.
BLITZER: Very quickly, before I let you go, Congressman, have you been briefed on why they started this investigation of this House Intelligence Committee staffer to begin with whatever happened to that investigation?
CROW: I have not. I don't have that information.
BLITZER: All right. Thank you very much, Congressman Jason Crow of Colorado. We'll continue, of course, our coverage of this story. I appreciate it very much.
CROW: Thank you.
BLITZER: Just ahead, the new twists in the already chaotic New York City race for a mayor. We're going to talk about it with one of the candidates, Andrew Yang. He's standing by live. We'll discuss when we come back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
BLITZER: It's being called New York City's most consequential election in years. And in the final hours of campaigning, the mayoral race is more chaotic than it has been.
CNN National Correspondent Athena Jones has the latest.
ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): In the frenetic final days in the race to lead New York City --
ERIC ADAMS (D), NEW YORK MAYORAL CANDIDATE: I never had a doubt, not one day, that we were not going to win this.
JONES: Brooklyn Bureau President Eric Adams, whose scant public polling suggest is the frontrunner in the race, keeping the focus on public safety.
ADAMS: I'm not going back to the days where our babies were waking up to gunshots and not alarm clocks.
JONES: Meanwhile, in a last-minute twist, two of the other leading Democratic mayoral candidates, former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia and Businessman Andrew Yang, making a series of campaign stops together.
KATHRYN GARCIA (D) NEW YORK MAYORAL CANDIDATE: Today Andrew Yang and I are campaigning together.
ANDREW YANG (D) NEW YORK MAYORAL CANDIDATE: I'm so thrilled to be campaigning with Kathryn Garcia today.
JONES: The push coming as voters make their picks under a new voting system that allows them to rank up to five candidates in order of preference. The method allows for instant runoffs if, as expected, no one in the crowded field wins more than 50 percent of first choice ballots in the first round. And it means being someone's second or third choice could make a difference.
But while Yang has repeatedly asked his supporters to rank Garcia --
YANG: If you support me, please do a Kathryn also on your ballot.
JONES: Garcia has declined to do the same.
GARCIA: Let me be very clear, I'm not co-endorsing.
JONES: Still there joint appearance drawing the ire Eric Adams and his supporters, one likening it to voter suppression. Adams campaign re- tweeting supporter, Ashley Sharpton, daughter of Reverend Al Sharpton, who suggested the apparently alliance was aimed at disenfranchising black voters. And Adams, saying -- ADAMS: They're saying that we can't trust a person of color to be the mayor of the city of New York.
JONES: Yang responding --
YANG: I would tell Eric Adams that I've been Asian my entire life.
JONES: Civil Rights Lawyer Maya Wiley who is emerged as the top progressive candidate in the field also weighing in saying, ranked- choice voting or alliances formed from it is not voter suppression.
JONES: And in a race that has been dominated by concerns of rising crime on New York City streets and subways, a volunteer for Eric Adams campaign is recovering from surgery after he was stabbed multiple times on Sunday. It's not clear if the incidents had nothing to do with this volunteer's work for the Adams campaign. Police are investigation. Wolf?
BLITZER: All right, Athena, thank you very much, Athena Jones reporting from New York.
Let's discuss with the New York mayoral candidate, we're talking about Andrew Yang. He's one of the candidates you just saw in Athena's report. Andrew Yang, thank you so much for joining us.
New York, as you know, is facing this wave of violent crime. Shootings in the month of May were up more than 70 percent over last year.
Why are you a better candidate to keep New Yorkers safe than Eric Adams, who actually spent his career in law enforcement?
YANG: I'm so honored to have been endorsed by the police captain's union here, the NYPD, Wolf. These are the officers that worked with Eric for years, and they decided I was a better choice to keep New Yorkers safe. They want a partner that they can trust, that they know will follow through.
We do need to get the gun violence down, which involves assigning more detectives to the gun violence suppression division and building a new anti-violence and community safety unit of plain clothed officers to go into the communities, to get the guns out. But I also endorse by the fire fighters. The police captains to the firefighters to the one you know best how to keep New Yorker safe, and I will be working hand in hand with them as mayor.
BLITZER: Eric Adams also says, Andrew, that by joining forces with Kathryn Garcia, you're sending a message that voters, quote, can't trust a person of color as mayor of New York City. I know you already responded. You pointed out you're, of course, Asian, but what do you say specifically to that allegation?
YANG: I think New Yorkers right now are looking for leaders who want to work with each other, who want to help pull our city out of this crisis. I think campaigning with other candidates, you might not see eye-to-eye with them on everything, but you know that we have to be able to come together to try and get New York City through this crisis. That's what New Yorkers tell me they're looking for all the time and I think Eric's statement speaks for itself.
BLITZER: But it is not just your competitors criticizing you for this alliance. Mayor Bill de Blasio, for example, calls you and Garcia an odd couple, is accusing you of opportunism. What do you say to him?
YANG: Well, Bill de Blasio has been making phone calls on behalf of Eric. So he's probably frustrated that it's not helping his hand- chosen candidate.
BLITZER: The race is getting pretty dirty, and it's tomorrow that it ends. Accusations of racial bias, name-calling, Eric Adams called you a fraud. Are you worried all of this vitriol will lead voters to simply stay home and sit this one out?
YANG: I talk to hundreds of voters every day, Wolf. And they want to turn the page. They want change. They know politics, as usual, is not working. That's one reason why you are seeing the excitement rise minute by minute around my campaign.
Earlier today, we announced we have more individual donors than any campaign in the history of New York City mayoral politics. We're going to win this race tomorrow and help bring the city together and put to bed the politics of the past that's trying to divide us along these false divisions that really don't solve any problems.
BLITZER: Voters will rank their top five candidates. It's a pretty complicated system that's going to be in effect. But you have said today that if there is anyone they shouldn't rank, it's Eric Adams. Are you essentially encouraging your supporters to game the system?
YANG: Of course, not. I mean, I don't think Eric Adams is the right choice. You know, I think I'm the right choice. I want to help bring the city together and put it on a course for success. And so, of course, you know, I have my own feelings about different candidates. I'm campaigning with Kathryn later today. And someone asked me if there was a candidate I did not have on my ballot. I voted early this week. And Eric was not on my ballot.
BLITZER: It's going to take a while to get the results of this election. It could be weeks, right?
YANG: It could be weeks, Wolf, but it is imperative that New Yorkers get to the polls tomorrow and make their voices heard. The more votes that are cast, the greater the chance we will be able to put the city on course for success with a mandate, so that people will feel like they were included in the process. I voted earlier this week.
Ranked-choice voting is a lot of fun. You get to choose your top candidate, and hopefully it is me. But then you can think about a couple other candidates you support. And you don't need to fill it out. You could just go vote for your top choice and then move on from there.
BLITZER: Andrew Yang, thanks so much for joining us.
YANG: Well, it's great to be back in The Situation room. I'm going to be back as mayor. Let's go New York City. Go out there and vote?
BLITZER: All right, we will see you in The Situation Room one way or another, I am sure. Thanks so much for joining us. I appreciate. We're going to continue our news here in The Situation Room.
Coming up, we're getting some new reporting right now on former President Trump's relationship with a trusted financial officer for his company. Is Allen Weisselberg preparing to provide evidence against his boss? Stay with us.
BLITZER: Tonight, there is intense new scrutiny of former President Trump's relationship with his company's chief financial officer amid speculation about whether Allen Weisselberg might flip on his long- time boss.
Josh Dawsey, the political investigations reporter for "The Washington Post" has been doing digging on this. He's joining us right now.
Josh, thanks for joining us.
All eyes are on Weisselberg amid these New York investigations. You have new reporting on just how close he remains to former President Trump. What have you learned? Tell us -- tell us your latest information.
JOSH DAWSEY, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: That's right, Wolf. Allen Weisselberg is still going into Trump tower regularly. He was spotted on a recent morning driving around 8:00 a.m. Prosecutors and investigators in New York who are looking into the former president's tax dealings, his company's finances and are under scrutiny have grown frustrated that Mr. Weisselberg, who's a long-time CFO of the economy, is not giving them the cooperation that they desire.
And they believe that Mr. Weisselberg remains in close touch with former President Trump and speaking to him regularly as we saw evidence of that on a recent day when Mr. Weisselberg was there. Former President Trump has also been going into Trump Tower a couple days a week from his golf club in Bedminster.
BLITZER: Where he's staying. And very quickly, your bottom line conclusion right now, he's unlikely to flip. Is that what you're reporting?
DAWSEY: That's what we're reporting. Mr. Weisselberg is under intense scrutiny. There is an investigation and personal finances of various figures, but it would be certainly premature to think it would happen and investigators believe right now that he's not.
BLITZER: All right. Josh Dawsey, excellent reporting, as usual. Thank you very much.
Let's get analysis from Dave Aronberg, state attorney for Palm Beach County down in Florida.
Dave, thanks very much for joining us.
How happy should former President Trump be that Dave Weisselberg is still actually showing up at his office at Trump Tower in Manhattan?
DAVE ARONBERG, STATE ATTORNEY, PALM BEACH COUNTY, FLORIDA: Well, good evening, Wolf. Yeah, that was a birthday present for Donald Trump. Right now, it's easy for Allen Weisselberg to play hard to get with state prosecutors in Manhattan. He hasn't been charged with any crimes yet but that could change.
He better not overplay his hand. You're dealing with a district attorney in Cyrus Vance Jr. who is retiring at the end of this year, and this is his legacy issue. So, he wants decisions before he leaves office. He's determined because he wants to go get Trump's taxes twice before the U.S. Supreme Court. This is a three-year investigation.
And so, if you're Allen Weisselberg, I really want to be careful because this office is clearly taking it seriously and you don't want to keep rejecting the authors or prosecutors because one day you could wake up with a horse's head in your bed, metaphorically speaking, of course, because we prosecutors love animals.
BLITZER: Is there a chance, Dave, that Weisselberg -- and this is just hypothetical -- could already have flipped on Trump, neither Trump or the public would know. Access to financial documents, information could be huge for the investigators, at least potentially.
ARONBERG: It is possible. Remember, the grand jury that is meeting had Weisselberg's top lieutenant come in and answer questions. Ad so, that leads me to believe that they are using him to get to Weisselberg. But all accounts, Weisselberg has not been before the grand jury yet. That will come later.
I think it is more likely that there is some negotiations behind the scenes. Would get things real is when Weisselberg gets indicted. I think it will be up to him whether he cut the deal before he gets charged, or after he gets charged. That decision is up to Weisselberg.
BLITZER: Yeah, I think Weisselberg is 74 years old as well.
All right. Dave Aronberg, thank you very much as usual.
Coming up, a new wave of mass shootings across the United States. We're going to have the latest on the surge in crime and gun violence going on in our community.
BLITZER: Very disturbing rise in crime and gun violence across the United States.
CNN's Amara Walker reports, the weekend saw a new wave of mass shootings.
AMARA WALKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): While Americans emerge from one pandemic, what the White House calls a public health epidemic of gun violence, is surging across the country.
At least ten mass shootings happening in nine different states over the weekend from Alaska to New Jersey, leaving seven dead, 45 others injured.
Several occurring where crowds gathered including in Aurora, Colorado, where a group was celebrating the new Juneteenth federal holiday in a shopping mall parking lot early Sunday. One person killed, four injured.
ANTHONY CHAMBRAY, AURORA RESIDENT: Eager to get out and have some fun, tired of being cooped up, and this is crazy.
WALKER: Around the same time, another Juneteenth celebration in Indiana, ending with gun violence, killing one and injuring four. In Oakland, California, police say one person was killed and six hurt as gunshots rang out in a crowd of 5,000 people near Lake Merritt. And in Dallas, Texas, a 10 and 15-year-old among the eight people injured in a shooting.
Former Philadelphia police commissioner and former D.C. police chief, Charles Ramsey, weighs in on one factor contributing to the rising violence.
CHARLES RAMSEY, FORMER PHILADELPHIA POLICE COMMISSIONER: Well, listen, you got guns in the hands of people that should not have guns, and Congress is doing absolutely nothing. Some state legislatures are doing absolutely nothing. Texas just passed a law letting anybody carry a gun that wants to, which, in my opinion is exactly the wrong way to be moving right now.
WALKER: There have been nearly 300 mass shootings so far this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive. That's a 39 percent increase compared to the same time period in 2020.
CNN defines a mass shooting as four or more people shot, not including the shooter. Some law enforcement officials say they're concerned about the violence spiking further during the summer months as they try to understand the root of this crisis.
CHIEF SHON BARNES, CITY OF MADISON POLICE DEPARTMENT: We're trying to determine, what are the ramifications of coming out of a pandemic? What are the frustrations that are Americans feeling? How are we dealing with mental health? How are we dealing with some of the stressors related to unemployment in this country? And so these are the things that I think we have to wrap our heads around.
WALKER (on camera): And, Wolf, there is also that debate over bail reform, where we have seen some states get rid of cash bail altogether for some offenses, and whether or not that is contributing to the rise in gun violence. Statistics show that major U.S. cities are grappling with an uptick in homicide and shootings including right here in Atlanta. Just last, at week at this Big Bear grocery store, a cashier was shot and killed and over a face mask dispute -- Wolf.
BLITZER: Amara Walker, reporting for us -- Amara, thank you very, very much. Very disturbing.
And to our viewers, thanks very much for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer in THE SITUATION ROOM. You can almost follow me on Twitter and Instagram @WolfBlitzer. Tweet the show @CNNSitRoom.
"ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.