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State of the Union

Has Trump Created Cult of Personality?; Interview With Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani; Interview Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke; Jeff Sessions Uses Bible To Defend Separating Of Families; Corker: Republicans In "Cult-Like Situation" With Trump; A Trump-Kim Blockbuster In This Week's "State of the Cartoonion". Aired 9-10a ET

Aired June 17, 2018 - 09:00   ET




JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Pardon me? With Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort in lockup and reports that Trump's longtime fixer, Michael Cohen, might flip, is the president preparing to pardon his pals?

RUDY GIULIANI (R), FORMER MAYOR OF NEW YORK: Presidents give pardons all the time.

TAPPER: The president's attorney Rudy Giuliani will be here live next.

Plus, immigration outcry. Faith leaders speak out as families are split at the border.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is just unjust. That's unbiblical. That is un-American.

TAPPER: We will go live to the Mexico border with the Democrat leading a Father's Day march for families.

And cult of personality? President Trump lavishes praise on dictator Kim Jong-un.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: He speaks, and his people sit up in attention. I want my people to do the same.

TAPPER: As one of his biggest Republican critics says the party lives in fear of Trump.

SEN. BOB CORKER (R), TENNESSEE: It's not a good place for any party to end up with a cult-like situation.

TAPPER: Has loyalty to the president trumped principle?


TAPPER: Hello. I'm Jake Tapper in Washington, where the state of our union is learning about another meeting between a Russian national and a member of the Trump team.

Trump associate Roger Stone now tells "The Washington Post" that, in May 2016, he met with a Russian national who he says was offering dirt on Hillary Clinton in exchange for $2 million. Stone says he rejected the offer.

The meeting was arranged by another member of the Trump campaign, Michael Caputo, who followed up with Stone in these text messages obtained by "The Washington Post."

Caputo asks Stone: "How crazy is the Russians?"

Stone answers: "Wants big money for the info. Waste of time."

Caputo: "The Russian way," Caputo replies. "Anything at all interesting?"

"No," says Stone.

The revelation follows denials by Stone that he had ever met with any Russians during the campaign.


ROGER STONE, FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN ADVISER: I have never been to Russia. I didn't talk to anybody who was identifiably Russian during the two-year run-up to this campaign.

I'm not sure I did previously either. I very definitely can't think of anybody who might have been a Russian without my knowledge. No, I think it's a canard.


TAPPER: Stone and Caputo now claim they had forgotten about the meeting, but their memories were refreshed after being shown the text messages.

Caputo's lawyer has sent a letter to Congress to update the testimony Caputo gave to the House Intelligence Committee last summer in which he did not reveal the meeting.

But Stone and Caputo are this morning leveling accusations of their own. They say that the man that Stone met with was an FBI informant.

The Russian national, Henry Greenberg, has also used the name Henry Oknyansky. And on an immigration filing into 2015, as "The Post" reports, he claimed to have been an informant, though he told "The Washington Post" he was not acting on behalf of the FBI when he met with Stone and that he stopped working with the FBI in 2013.

The FBI did not comment to "The Post."

This latest twist comes as President Trump's former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, is currently behind bars and Trump's longtime fixer, Michael Cohen, is reportedly telling friends he expects to be arrested soon.

The pressure is building on both of them to cooperate with the special counsel and prosecutors.

Now President Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, is raising the specter of -- quote -- "cleaning up" the aftermath of the Mueller probe by using presidential pardons.

Joining me now is President Trump's attorney, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

Mr. Mayor, happy Father's Day. Thanks so much for joining us.

GIULIANI: The same to you.

TAPPER: Let's start with that breaking news from "The Post" that former associate Roger Stone met with a Russian national to try to learn damaging information about Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Was President Trump aware of this meeting?

GIULIANI: I doubt it.

I -- I certainly didn't know about it. It's news to me. I just -- I just read it here in "The Washington Post."

It seems to me, however, whatever the recollection, differing recollections about this, it sort of gets resolved with the fact that Stone did nothing about it, came to the conclusion, according to "The Post," that it was a waste of time.

He and Greenberg came to the conclusion that it was a waste of time. So I can't imagine anything got back to the then presidential candidate that was of any substance, if he had concluded it was a waste of time.

TAPPER: I guess the weird thing about all of this is, we keep learning about these meetings that members of the Trump team had with Russian nationals that the Trump team had either not disclosed or lied about before, whether it's the Trump Tower meeting with Donald Trump Jr., Paul Manafort, and Jared Kushner, or George Papadopoulos meeting with that London professor with ties to the Kremlin.

Now we hear about this. It all makes people in the public, I think, wonder, why all the lies about this or the misrepresentations if nothing bad or untoward ever happened?

GIULIANI: The earlier meeting, I don't particularly want to go back to, because I think that has been kind of explained and overexplained.


However, this one, I can see why Stone might not have focused on it, because the guy had nothing to offer. The guy was doing everything he could to disguise who he was. You read off a couple of names that he had. The most extraordinary thing is, on some document, he described himself as an informant. Every informant I have ever had tried to keep that secret. You don't -- you don't, like, say, oh, I'm an informant, I can come into the United States.

So it sounds like a very strange guy. Was he an FBI informant or not? Well, we know from the probe by the inspector general that the FBI at the highest levels here were doing very, very unorthodox things, if not out-and-out illegal and unethical.

So, would they be using a guy like this? I doubt it, because you don't just say you are an informant.

TAPPER: So, you don't buy the idea that this was necessarily a sting the way that Stone and Caputo are suggesting?

GIULIANI: Oh, how do I know? I would not discount it.

The report gives you all sorts of interesting leads to other possible unorthodox investigations. And I think I am being kind by saying unorthodox. But, no, I can't say that it's connected to that.

But I sure -- I believe that the Mueller investigation should be investigated, not because necessarily of Mueller, but because of its genesis in this very, very now completely almost illegal and unethical probe, this Russian probe, that began with Peter Strzok in charge. And he didn't leave it until July of last year.

TAPPER: So, you are calling for a special counsel to investigate the special counsel?


GIULIANI: Not -- not so unorthodox. I mean, it's happened.

No, I'm saying the Justice Department should do it. And I'm not really saying the special counsel. I'm saying what led up to the special counsel.

I don't think Mueller and his people need to be investigated, unless something comes out of that. Remember, you have got a bunch of odd things that led to the appointment of Bob, which is, first, we have this Russian probe that looks like it was rooted in they're turning around the people that were investigating Trump, investigating Hillary, who had, I think, completely screwed it up, according to the Horowitz report.

And Horowitz concludes ultimately no bias, but he does conclude that almost everything was done wrong.

Second, it then turns into the Russian probe, which they make a priority.

TAPPER: Right.

GIULIANI: That one, they have not made a conclusion about bias yet because they haven't investigated it yet.

TAPPER: Right.

GIULIANI: I think the independent -- the inspector general is begging to investigate it. He is saying, let me investigate it, because we can find out the bona fides of the eventual Mueller investigation, including it's being premised on Comey's illegally leaked memo.

I just said a bunch of illegal things that usually leads a court to say the thing is tainted. So, they may come out with a lot of problems if they don't get this resolved right now.

TAPPER: Just to be clear, inspector general Horowitz did not conclude that Comey had broken the law.



TAPPER: But -- but I want to move on to President Trump's former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who is now in jail awaiting trial on 25 criminal charges, including allegedly witness tampering.

President Trump responded to this on Twitter -- quote -- "Wow, what a tough sentence for Paul Manafort, who has represented Ronald Reagan, Bob Dole, and many other top political people and campaigns. Didn't know Manafort was the head of the mob."

Obviously, he's joking there.


TAPPER: "What about Comey and crooked Hillary and all of the others? Very unfair."

The president has used similar language before, very unfair, tough sentence, when talking about pardons and commutations such as for Alice Johnson, Scooter Libby, Dinesh D'Souza.

You have floated the idea of pardons with "The New York Daily News" a couple days ago.

If Manafort is convicted, will President Trump pardon him?

GIULIANI: I guess I should clarify this once and for all.

I think I have. The president has issued no pardons in this investigation. The president is not going to issue pardons in this investigation.

And my advice to him, as long as I'm his lawyer, is not to do it, because you just cloud what is becoming now a very clear picture of an extremely unfair investigation with no -- no criminality involved in it of any kind.

TAPPER: What. GIULIANI: I want that to come out loud and clear and not get clouded by anybody being fired, anybody being pardoned.

When it's over, hey, he's the president of the United States. He retains his pardon power. Nobody is taking that away from him. He can pardon in his judgment, based on the Justice Department, Council's Office, not me. I'm out of it.

TAPPER: Right.

GIULIANI: And I shouldn't be involved in that process, because I'm probably too rooted in his defense.

But I don't want to -- I couldn't and I don't want to take prerogatives away from him.

TAPPER: Sure. Obviously, he has the power, as endowed in the Constitution.

But let me ask you, how do you respond to critics who say you discussing it on TV, you discussing it with "The New York Daily News," President Trump tweeting, that you are sending a signal to defendants in a criminal prosecution that a pardon is out there and might be on its way?

People -- some people think that this is the president and you suggesting that -- signaling, really, don't cooperate with prosecutors because a pardon is there if you just hold on.


GIULIANI: Jake, I don't think that is the interpretation. It is certainly not intended that way.

What it should be -- and I will tell you what I clearly mean -- what I mean is, you are not going to get a pardon just because you are involved in this investigation. You probably have a higher burden if you are involved in this investigation, as compared to the others who get pardoned.

But you are not certainly excluded from it, if in fact the president and his advisers -- not me -- come to the conclusion that you have been treated unfairly. And that would be wrong to do that.

And, really, nobody else can exercise the pardon power but the president. Some people can recommend. He has got to make the decision. And in the scope of pardons, it's true these would not be that unusual.

In these political investigations, as you know, Jake, going back to Nixon, Ford, Reagan -- Carter, Reagan, rather, even Bush and Clinton, these -- these pardons happen in these political investigations.

That doesn't mean they're going to happen here. Doesn't mean that anybody should rely on it. Please, listen to what I'm saying and the president. Big signal is, nobody has been pardoned yet. If you are going to do it, probably, this is the time to do it to cut it off.

There is nothing to cut off.

TAPPER: Right.

GIULIANI: But there is a lot of unfairness out there. We don't know yet the full scope of it. The Horowitz report has given us a little of it.

Look, these guys saying that Trump should be defeated, right, right, right, we should do everything we can, we should take action to stop him, that's very unusual stuff, FBI agents taking bribes in exchange for information, five at least.

So, we have got to get to the bottom...

TAPPER: Bribes? What do you mean? What bribes are you talking about? You talking about...

GIULIANI: I'm talking about that part -- I'm talking about that part of the report -- I think it's the fifth chapter -- in which they talk about...

TAPPER: Reporters taking them to baseball games and stuff?

GIULIANI: Baseball games...

TAPPER: Right.

GIULIANI: ... vacations and other things of value, in exchange for confidential information about the investigation.

TAPPER: It doesn't say that, though. It says that they found out that some reporters had done some things, and they are going to investigate further. It doesn't say bribes. It doesn't say in exchange for information.

GIULIANI: Yes, it does. In exchange for information, it says. It doesn't say bribes. You're correct.

But it does say in apparent violation of federal statutes and regulations. Well, the federal statute, OK, could be gratuity. But it would lead to firing of any other FBI agent and possibly the prosecution.

I don't want to judge to that, but that is why the investigation is so important.

TAPPER: I want to ask you about the comment that President Trump made the other day.

The team has already acknowledged that the statement that Trump gave about that meeting at Trump Tower with the Russian government official who had promised dirt on Hillary Clinton, that that original explanation was false, that it was misleading.

The president was asked about this on Friday. Take a listen.


TRUMP: Let's not talk about it. You know what that is?

QUESTION: But can you tell us?

TRUMP: It's irrelevant. It's a statement to "The New York Times," the phony, failing New York Times.

QUESTION: Well, just to clear it up. To clear it up.

TRUMP: Just wait a minute. Wait a minute. That's not a statement to a high tribunal of judges.

QUESTION: Understood.

TRUMP: That's a statement to the phony "New York Times."


TAPPER: Now, obviously, it is not illegal, Mayor Giuliani, to lie to the American people, to lie to the press, but isn't it wrong to lie, no matter what, no matter who you're lying to?

GIULIANI: Well, of course it is wrong to lie. It breaks one of the commandments, I think.

However, the president's distinction is a correct one. Lie is a -- is a heck of a conclusion. I mean, it is one you worry about with prosecutors and perjury.

But the reality is, in a situation like this, there are going to be a lot of differing recollections and a lot of corrections are going to be necessary. That is why you don't want to go under oath until everything is settled and you are sure of your recollection.

I am actually confused myself about that meeting. First -- first of all, I don't think she -- I don't think she was a government official, the woman who proffered...

TAPPER: No, but she had been -- she had been -- when the e-mail was sent to Donald Trump Jr., it was told -- he was told that she was a Russian lawyer, a Russian government lawyer.

GIULIANI: Oh, a government lawyer. I just thought a Russian -- a lawyer, like I'm an American lawyer, but not a government lawyer.

But OK. In any event, I don't know if she was described clearly as a Russian official or just a Russian lawyer.

It led to nothing. It led to no information, just like...


GIULIANI: Just like the thing with Stone led to no information. So, all these things are kind of dry holes.

TAPPER: All right.

I want to ask you one more thing, sir, before you go...


TAPPER: ... and go celebrate Father's Day.


TAPPER: You said something yesterday about the agents and investigators working on the Russia probe that raised a lot of eyebrows.

Let's play some of that sound.


GIULIANI: Instead of investigating President Trump, they should go to Bellevue.


GIULIANI: Wackadoodles.

Ahh! We want Hillary. What is going to happen? I need a psychiatrist.


TAPPER: Talking about prosecutors and FBI agents and said, they're wackadoodles, they should go to Bellevue, the psychiatrist hospital.


GIULIANI: That was nice.

TAPPER: There are a lot of people who are shocked and disappointed to hear you, a former U.S. attorney, attacking prosecutors and FBI agents.

GIULIANI: Oh, come on. Well, I'm sorry. I had to put prosecutors -- not FBI agents, but other law enforcement -- in jail when I was a prosecutor.

Never shrunk from that responsibility. Some of them are unfair. Some of them are unethical. The guys who were taking vacations and tickets and -- they were -- they should be prosecuted.

And the ones I was talking about were the instances where people are described as crying when Hillary lost. I said, if you an FBI agent or a prosecutor that is crying, and you work for me, I'm sorry, I send you for a mental evaluation.

And you shouldn't be working on a case where you have such a severe bias. And excuse me if I think that doesn't effect your -- your -- your judgment.

TAPPER: But you don't agree with the people who say that you have gone beyond zealous advocacy into undermining federal law enforcement officials?

GIULIANI: No, just the opposite, just the opposite.

If you fail to recognize the crimes, unethical behavior of federal law enforcement officials, you are undermining our system of justice. If you call them out, and you do something about it, which the Justice Department hasn't done yet, but has to, then you are -- then you are reaffirming that no one is above the law.

And that's all we want here. We want the -- we want the Mueller probe to be investigated, the way the Trump administration has been investigated. And we would like to see a report with the conclusions, and we will find out then, is it as bad as some people think, or is it what I think, or is it nothing?

TAPPER: Mr. Mayor, happy Father's Day.


GIULIANI: Same to you, Jake.

TAPPER: Thank you so much for your time.

GIULIANI: Thank you. Thank you.

TAPPER: Appreciate it.

Coming up, 2,000 children taken from their parents and guardians at the border in just a six-week span, President Trump says he hates it, but his administration is the one doing it.

What is being done to change it, if anything?

We are going to go live to the border with the man challenging Ted Cruz for his Senate seat, Congressman Beto O'Rourke.

Stay with us.



TAPPER: Welcome back to STATE OF THE UNION. I'm Jake Tapper.

It's a painful Father's Day for the fathers and other parents separated from their children along the southern border over the last six weeks.

While families were sometimes split up at the border during the Bush and Obama years, the numbers have spiked in the last week -- month- and-a-half because of a new Trump administration zero tolerance policy of pursuing criminal charges against every adult trying to enter the country illegally.

So, the parents go to jail, and the children go to shelters, such as this one, where they stay until they are reunited with relatives or deported.

Joining me to talk about this from El Paso, Texas, is Democratic Congressman Beto O'Rourke. He's challenging Senator Ted Cruz for that Senate seat in November.

Congressman, thanks for joining us.

You are in El Paso right now. You're leading a march to the nearby town of Tornillo, where a new tent structure for these children has just opened. Officials say 360 children are already there.

What can you tell us about these kids? Have they all been separated from their parents under this new practice, or did any of them come here unaccompanied?

REP. BETO O'ROURKE (D), TEXAS: What we are told by Health and Human Services, under whose custody they are kept, it is a mix of kids who made that 2,000-mile journey on their own and kids who made that 2,000-journey with their parents.

And, at the moment that they finally thought they had reached safety, refuge, were going to petition for asylum, they were taken from their parents, and are now in Tornillo with no idea when or if they will see their mothers or their fathers on this Father's Day again.

TAPPER: President Trump has been repeatedly lying, blaming this policy on Democrats.

It is obviously based on this new practice by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Take a listen to Sessions defending this zero tolerance practice, which has resulted in hundreds, if not thousands, of children being separated from their parents since April.


JEFF SESSIONS, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: If people don't want to be separated from their children they should not bring them with them. We have to get this message out. We warn people to come to the country unlawfully bringing children with them that they can't expect that they will always be kept together.


TAPPER: Now, Sessions and the Justice Department say they are doing this because they need to stop this undocumented immigration crisis at the border.

What do you say to that argument, that this is all about deterrence and stopping people from coming into the country illegally? O'ROURKE: You know, I really feel, actually, for the Border Patrol

agents who are meeting these refugees and asylum seekers at their most desperate moment, at their most vulnerable.

We are asking those men and women of the Border Patrol to solve international problems, to solve our country's problems at our border with Mexico.

Things have to be really bad for you to leave Honduras, travel 2,000 miles, if you're lucky, on top of, not inside of a train known as The Beast, or La Bestia, with your child, to literally take your and your child's life into your hands, and hope that you will make it here, once you get here to try to request asylum, only to find that your child will be taken from you.

This is inhumane. I would like to say it is un-American, but it's happening right now in America. And it is on all of us, not just the Trump administration. This is on all of us.

And that is why we are marching to Tornillo today to bear witness, to shed light on this, to make sure everyone in America knows that this is going on, I hope, to produce the outrage and the public pressure to force those in power to do the right thing.

I am working on legislation with my colleagues to end the practice of family separation. It will be introduced this coming week. And I need Republicans and Democrats alike to join us to make sure that is America, and that we make sure that those who petition for asylum, we hear their case.

If they can meet the credible fear test that their country cannot take care of them and prevent them from being killed or harmed, there is a legal process for them here to reside. If they cannot, we will return them to their country of origin.

So, there is a way to do this, the right way to do this. And I want this country to do that at this critical moment. We will be judged for what we do or what we fail to do now. This is not just on the Trump administration. This is on all of us.

TAPPER: Congressman, as you know, Jeff Sessions has been raising the bar when it comes to asylum seekers, saying that domestic violence and the threat of gang violence should not any longer be enough to allow somebody asylum.


Would your legislation discuss that at all?

O'ROURKE: I want to make sure that -- yes, I want to make sure that every person fleeing terror, fleeing violence, fleeing death -- I met a 27-year-old mom who had fled from Honduras with her 7-year-old daughter at the McAllen Border Patrol station.

They had made that 2,000-mile journey. They had just been apprehended by the Border Patrol agent that they turned themselves into. She, through tears, in that cell in that Border Patrol station told me that she crossed in between ports of entry, and crossed towards that Border Patrol agent because she didn't know where else to cross.

She said that she was afraid (SPEAKING SPANISH) and didn't know what else to do.

I want to make sure that that mother, who might be fleeing domestic violence, whose daughter or son might be pressed into service for a ruthless gang or cartel, has the ability to petition for asylum lawfully and legally here in the United States.

That is this country at our best. That is our law right now as I read it. And, certainly, the eyes of the world, our kids, our conscience and history will judge us based on how we treat that woman.

Within hours of meeting her, her 7-year-old daughter was going to be taken from her. And I cannot imagine that trauma that mother and child felt at that moment. We have got to make that we do not continue to inflict that. Already, 2,000 kids in the last 45 kids have been taken from their parents.

We've got to put an end to this.

TAPPER: Congressman, here is what the president tweeted earlier this week -- quote -- "The Democrats are forcing the breakup of families at the border with their horrible and cruel legislative agenda. Any immigration bill must have full funding for the wall, end catch and release, visa lottery and chain, and go to merit-based immigration. Go for it. Win" -- unquote.

I understand this practice didn't come about because of a Democratic law. But you are in the minority in the House and the Senate, and you don't control the White House.

Don't you have to accept some compromises here if you want to make changes, including, for instance, funding the president's border wall?

O'ROURKE: I think this one is going to be on the American people.

And I think, when we make the choice clear that we can do the right thing by this country and for those kids, and not do it at the price of a 2,000-mile, 30-foot-high, $30 billion wall, not doing it at the price of deporting people who are seeking asylum, deporting people in some cases back to certain death, not doing it at the cost of ending family migration, which is the story of this country, certainly of the O'Rourkes, and millions of families who have fled terror or starvation in their countries to be here, I think the American people are going to force us to do the right thing.

That always happens in America. It is frustrating. It's slow. It doesn't happen right away. But, ultimately, we get it right. And I'm confident that the American people this time are going to get it right.

TAPPER: All right, Congressman Beto O'Rourke in Texas, thank you so much, sir. Appreciate your time. O'ROURKE: Happy Father's Day.

TAPPER: To you as well, sir.

President Trump doubling down on his controversial border policy, blaming Democrats for splitting up families. But is he planning to leverage the outrage to get a deal on the wall?

That's next.




JEFF SESSIONS, ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES: I thought I'd take a little bit of my digression here to discuss some concerns raised by our church friends about separation of families. And I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in "Romans 13" to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained the government for his purposes.


TAPPER: Attorney General Jeff Sessions using scripture to justify the new Trump administration policy of prosecuting all of those who attempt to enter the country illegally and thus prosecuting them all and thus separating hundreds if now thousands more children from their parents.

My panel here is with me. Senator Santorum, I believe that you are supporter of the administration's policy on this. Do you agree with the invocation of scripture to defend that?


RICK SANTORUM, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: No. I'm very careful about this. I mean, what -- you know, there are many religious leaders who object to this policy. And I certainly understand why.

TAPPER: Leaders of your church, the Catholic Church are very upset about it.

SANTORUM: Yes. It is gut wrenching to see these images and to understand what is going on. At the same time you have to -- you know, governmental officials have to look back and look at the consequences of what the law is.

And the reality is as Jeff Sessions said repeatedly, the law is in place to make sure that we treat people fairly under the law and we have a deterrent effect. The reality is that everybody who is going to be disagreeing with me on this panel is sounding very compassionate. Oh, we need to take all these people in. We need to take all these people in.

I just -- I just say that there is a consequence to that. I mean, if you say we are going to take these people in, more people will come and more people will come and we will have a bigger and bigger problem at the border.

You will be putting more children at risk. Of a 2,000 mile trek from Mexico which is not an easy thing to do. I mean, there is -- there are real consequences of this.

And this is what I would say to all of you. You want America to be open, fine. I would argue give your addresses out and tell the people who come to this country you can come to my house.


You can stay here --


SANTORUM: And you can come to my house and you can stay here as long as you want. I will pay for your education. I will pay for your --




SANTORUM: What you're saying is --


NAVARRO: Nobody is saying -- you are putting words in people's mouths.


NAVARRO: Nobody is saying we want an open country. What we are simply saying is we don't want two year olds torn from the arms of their mothers and crying and --

SANTORUM: And what is the consequence to that?

NAVARRO: The consequence of that is that we're going to have --

SANTORUM: More people coming.

NAVARRO: -- 2,000 children --

SANTORUM: More people coming.

NAVARRO: -- who are going to have incredible damage, emotional damage. The consequence of that is human suffering. The consequence of that is Americans are outraged -- I see American values being violated. SANTORUM: Their parents put them in that situation. Their parents put them in that situation. Their parents put them in that situation.

TAPPER: Congressman --


NAVARRO: It is utmost hypocrisy.

SANTORUM: No difference --


NAVARRO: It is the utmost cynicism to quote scripture. The same scripture that was quoted to justify slavery.

SANTORUM: Their parents put them in that situation.

NAVARRO: Who justify that and shame on any Christian that is doing that.


REP. GREGORY MEEKS (D-NY), FOREIGN AFFAIRS COMMITTEE: This is supposed to be a country of values.

SANTORUM: And laws.

NAVARRO: There is a law.

MEEKS: The law that is in place now, the same law that was in place with the Obama administration, with the Bush administration et cetera --

SANTORUM: Law to separated children and parents (ph).

MEEKS: -- I listened to former attorney general Gonzalez under the Bush administration who said there is discretion and that clearly this government, this president has utilized his discretion to separate families. That's the values that he is putting on the American people.

I think the American people and you senator should stand up and say no. When we have and we see something that is so horribly wrong we are going to stand and we are going to make sure that does not occur.

SANTORUM: The parents --




SANTORUM: These parents broke the law.

GRANHOLM: OK. They did not break the law if they are seeking asylum. That is not a breaking of the law.

SANTORUM: They can --


SANTORUM: -- asylum with in the country that they -- they can go to the embassy and seek asylum. They don't have to go 2,000 miles to cross the border.

TAPPER: Governor --



TAPPER: Governor, let me ask you a question. Should Democrats be willing to give something in order to have this policy? That is what President Trump wants. He is using this as a negotiating tactic.

GRANHOLM: Yes. But what they put on the table right now doesn't address this problem at all. What Paul Ryan's so-called compromise does not address this issue at all.

Democrats are willing to compromise. We don't want total open borders. But what we do want is to be a nation that does have compassion.

Rick, you have seven children. If you were living in Honduras which is the country with the highest child homicide rate, the country with the highest female homicide rate, gangs, you would not leave all seven of your children there.

SANTORUM: With all due -- with all due respect --

GRANHOLM: You would want to save them. You could drive nails through my hands. You could whip me on my back but do not take my children away. That to me is totally not who we are.

SANTORUM: With all due respect the only person who is actually talking about a solution to this is Marco Rubio, who is out there talking about foreign policy that actually can address these issues. That's what we --


SANTORUM: We have not done any -- we have completely ignored --


SANTORUM: Yes, we have completely ignored our southern border --

MEEKS: If you look at what's taking place in the House and that's why we came two votes short of a motion to discharge to put a bill on the floor next week that we collectively can do to make a difference and to change it. So we have been (INAUDIBLE) people are working on it now and -- (CROSSTALK)

SANTORUM: We're talking about immigration.

MEEKS: And instead of --

SANTORUM: I'm talking about -- I'm talking about foreign policy with respect to our involvement in Honduras, Guatemala, Cuba --

NAVARRO: That's not -- that should not be one thing or the other.



NAVARRO: No, listen. I am Nicaragua. OK? I was born in Nicaragua.


SANTORUM: If you want to solve the problem let's solve the problem instead of trying to deal with the symptom of the problem.

NAVARRO: Two hundred people have been killed -- 200 people have been killed like dogs in Nicaragua and people are desperate to get out there. That has happened in the last six weeks.

And you are right. There is a foreign policy component to this but there is also an immigration policy. It is not either/or. That's a completely false equivalency.

And I would say to my senator Marco Rubio, he happens to be my senator, you should be on Dianne Feinstein's bill where there are 43 Democrats.

TAPPER: (INAUDIBLE) stops the -- that stops the separation policy.

NAVARRO: Of separating children.

Marco, like me these are kids that look like us, that sound like us. Their parents are doing what our parents did, flee oppressive regimes, flee economic distress to have their children to be able to give them a better life. And it is horrible to me that he is instead tweeting about Kanye West's new record and chicken sandwiches and not on that bill.

TAPPER: I want to play sound from Congressman Luis Gutierrez, Democrat from Illinois talking about Attorney General Jeff Sessions.


REP. LUIS GUTIERREZ (D), ILLINOIS: Sessions, he just love for black people to be in the back of the bus again. Yes. He would love for women to be in the kitchen.

He would love for gay people to be in the closet again and for me not to have a microphone to be able to speak to anybody. (END VIDEO CLIP)

TAPPER: What is your reaction to that, Congressman?

MEEKS: My reaction is that we are looking at what Jeff Sessions' policies have been.

TAPPER: For black people to be in the back of the bus?

MEEKS: Well, he's looking at about cutting voting rights, when you look about reducing civil rights and doing as the attorney general. When you look at those policies, you know, I am concerned about some of the issues that reminds me of what happened post reconstruction when you start rolling back laws.


And so therefore we as a people have to make sure that we don't follow the past example because we want to become a more perfect union and not make the same mistakes of the past. And that's on the line.

TAPPER: What do you think about that statement from Gutierrez, Senator?

SANTORUM: It's disgusting. This is -- look, I understand the crudening of the discourse in this country. When we see it. We see it out in the White House.

I get it. But to play these types of divisive, racial bigotry type --


MEEKS: I'm not going to allow you to get away with that, sir. Because the one that had been playing the divisive and racist issues has been the president of the United States of America from the very beginning.

SANTORUM: I mentioned that first. I mentioned it first.

MEEKS: He has divided this nation and he continues to divide the nation with his words.

SANTORUM: Yes. And if you look at the Democratic party --


SANTORUM: The Democratic party has made their lock stock and barrel in racial division in this country.


SANTORUM: They have made it their sine qua non.

NAVARRO: There is also no doubt that --

(CROSSTALK) NAVARRO: There is no doubt that Luis Gutierrez words are incendiary but there's also no doubt that the DOJ under Jeff Sessions has gone anti-immigrant, anti LGBT --



NAVARRO: -- and has done terrible things to take away voting rights.


TAPPER: Everyone, stick around. We're going to take a very quick break.

Look into my eyes. What do you see? I'm the cult of personality.

The Republican say that 80's hit could be the new anthem for the Republican Party after this break.




SEN. BOB CORKER (R), TENNESSEE: We are in a strange place. It's almost, it's becoming a cultish thing, isn't it? It's not a good place for any party to end up with a cult-like situation as it relates to a president.


TAPPER: Senator Bob Corker, Republican of Tennessee, the chairman of the Senate Arms -- I mean, Senate Foreign Affairs Committee talking about how the Republican Party on Capitol Hill is cult-like.

Ana Navarro, is that true? Is that accurate?

NAVARRO: You know, I think it is a little more complicated than cult- like. I think he has some very loyal base members --

TAPPER: The president.

NAVARRO: -- who see no flaw, who see no mistake, who see no wrong. Somebody who can see a president who is clearly making fun of a disabled reporter and then tell you do not believe your lying eyes, that is cult like.

But there is also folks who are just afraid, cowards, frankly, who don't want to confront a president that can affect their primaries. We see a lot of that going on in the Republican Party, in Capitol Hill, who will criticize him in private but are too scared to criticize him in public or God forbid take him on in Congress or legislatively. And there is also folks out there, Republican leaders who are pragmatic opportunist who sold out their principles in order to make money, in order to be close to power, in order to get something that they want from this president. So I think there is loyal base, cult- like opportunists, pragmatic opportunists, and just a lot of very scared people.

TAPPER: What is your impression, Governor?

GRANHOLM: Yes. George Will said on Friday that the Republican Party is -- has now been a bunch of invertebrates. I mean, there is -- there is such slavish adoration or following whether it's because of fear or whether it is because of belief alignment.

If there were one place to be able to stand up on your own I would think that it would be the issue we just talked about which is separating families. You cannot be pro life and not be pro child and pro family. So this would be one place for people to step up.

I think that Donald Trump is like a virus that the electorate will develop enough white blood cells to neutralize in 2018 and to eliminate in 2020.

TAPPER: Senator, you have been in support of the president, but you do -- you are willing on this show and elsewhere to criticize him when you think he has gone too far or when he has crossed a line. What do you think when you see so many members of your party not willing to call out basic moments of indecency and prevarication?

SANTORUM: Yes. I would just say any president has a cult-like following within -- to say Barack Obama didn't have a cult-like following. He had absolutely a cult-like following --


GRANHOLM: He didn't lie.

SANTORUM: And it wasn't -- and it wasn't transferrable to anybody else as we've seen. So, I don't think that is necessarily unusual.

The idea of why he hasn't -- why you don't call out your president is a very -- it's a political calculus. They are not going to call out a president because it under mines their own ability --


GRANHOLM: But in the face of obvious lies.

TAPPER: Let --


TAPPER: -- Congressman have the last word.

MEEKS: Number one, the camera of history is rolling. And it is on video tape now. And we will be able to see exactly what history is showing here.

Barack Obama when he was president, there were Democrats that did not agree with some of the things that he said. For example, TPP, they spoke out about it. They didn't reel it in.

Even (INAUDIBLE) to immigration. There were members of Congress, Democrats who said -- and pushed it more on DACA, to create DACA.

NAVARRO: Luis Gutierrez.

MEEKS: Right. But the Republicans here is yielding everything and the Republican Party no longer exists. It is the Trump party.


MEEKS: We are losing our values. And when we took our oath of office it wasn't to a president. It was to a country. We are on a dangerous --


TAPPER: Let me just say as a final word, happy father's day. You have seven children. Happy father's day to you. Happy father's day to everyone.


MEEKS: Happy father's day to you.

TAPPER: Thank you so much.

We still have one more segment. Are President Trump and Kim Jong-un the next buddy cop duo? Call it lethal nuclear weapon? The subject of this week's "State of the Cartoonion."

Stay with us.



TAPPER: In a world where the American president tries to make peace with a ruthless dictator through their affection for corny movie trailers. It's the subject of this week's "State of the Cartoonion."


TAPPER (voice-over): Perhaps the oddest moment of the Singapore summit was the presentation of a fake movie trailer that the White House created to try to convince Kim Jong-un to give up his nuclear weapons. Done in the style of a big budget summer blockbuster.

NARRATOR (voice-over): Featuring Donald Trump and chairman Kim Jong- un, in a meeting to remake history.

TAPPER: This is real. We didn't make it up. TRUMP: I showed it to him. And I think he loved it.

TAPPER: But we did wonder after this week, couldn't Kim and Trump just as easily pair up for a buddy flick?


Perhaps the next "Lethal Weapon."

DANNY GLOVER AS ROGER MURTAUGH: I'm too old for this (expletive).

TAPPER: In truth, no matter how much the president wants to gloss over it, Kim Jong-un belongs in a horror film.

At times this past year, the cartoony behavior seems to have lent itself better to animation.

TRUMP: Rocket man should have been handled a long time ago.

BUZZ LIGHTYEAR, CARTOON CHARACTER You are a sad, strange little man. Farewell.

TAPPER: Although, the way Trump has talking about Kim recently --

TRUMP: We have developed a pretty good relationship. We have done something that we're very proud of.

TAPPER: Maybe a rom-com is more appropriate.



TAPPER: Happy father's day to my dad, my father-in-law and all the pops out there.

Stay tuned, President Obama's former national security adviser, Dr. Susan Rice, is next.