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tv   Erin Burnett Out Front  CNN  January 6, 2021 4:00pm-5:00pm PST

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do, what do house republicans do? what's more important, the country and constitution or donald trump and his ego and your fear of his voters in the next election. moment of choosing. >> the president's behavior underscored why he lost the election, why he is now a loser. special coverage continues now with erin burnett. good evening. i am erin burnett. we have breaking news this hour. of course, terror in the nation's capitol. a curfew is in effect as we speak in washington. you wouldn't know it if you looked at pictures. you have mobs in the streets, standoff with police. we are learning the insurrection turned deadly. a woman was pronounced dead at a hospital after being shot on capitol grounds, amidst this, at this hour, we can confirm the
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entire d.c. national guard has been activated, joined by virginia state police and maryland troopers, as well as up to 500 members of the national guard in the state of maryland. the images we all saw in front of our eyes why unbelievable. it is not something anybody expected to see in the united states, anarchists breaking glass at the united states capitol, breaking in, then entering. it is the first time, first time the u.s. capitol has been breached since the british attacked and burned the building in august of '14 during the war of 1812. inside, an armed standoff. this image i found breathtaking when i saw it, on the door of the floor of the house, this image, guns drawn, pointed at the door of the people's house. and a protester on the senate floor where just hours earlier vice president penn state wce wg when they were counting
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electoral votes. and we learned congress is not going home for the night after all of this, the evacuations and fear, they're coming back. they're set to resume the count next hour. then this image. trump supporter breaking into house speaker nancy pelosi's office, feet in the desk, kicking back. leaving the note we will not back down. the violence was sparked by the president of the united states, donald j. trump who rallied that crowd earlier today. >> we're going to walk down to the capitol and we're going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women, not cheering so much for some of them because you'll never take back our country with weakness. you have to show strength and you have to be strong. >> i mean, listen to their leader, they marched on the
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capitol, stormed it, broke in, and the president is even now defending the mob attack saying, and i quote him, these are things that happen when a sacred landslide victory is stripped away. it's just crazy, it is a lie, it is untrue, and this is just what happens? no. as flash bangs were heard, there was a video pouring more gas on the fire marshall claiming the election was stolen. that's what he did. alex marquardt in washington near the capitol. we are an hour into the curfew, congress saying they're coming back in session to continue with the electoral college count. where do things stand now? >> reporter: we're an hour into the curfew, still have a lot of people who are out here. we are about five hours since the insurrection first started, since we watched rioters blow through a police line, make their way up the western steps
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of the capitol and into the capitol building. just an absolutely surreal scene. in the lead up to the curfew we did see finally for much of the afternoon, we were asking where is the law enforcement to push the rioters out. they did appear a short time ago. i'm going to show you the law enforcement presence here. this is a long line of officers from different agencies that pushed protesters, many of them rioters, many not rioters, away from the western side of the capitol. what you're looking at there is metropolitan police from washington, d.c., those are the ones in the green vests. we have d.c. national guard, we learned the entire d.c. national guard has been mobilized. they're in the middle of the crowd. you can see them with tall plastic riot shields. they are engaged in what is essentially a standoff with
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remnants of this protest, of this riot. i would say it is the more hardcore element because these are the ones defying law enforcement's orders to leave, defying the mayor's orders to go home. so there's still a significant contingent of them out here more than an hour after the curfew has gone into effect. i should also say the fbi is out here as well. it has been relatively peaceful since the curfew went into effect. there had been tear gas-fired, but we have not seen the kind of violent reaction from the law enforcement side we saw during the george floyd protests, during black lives matter protests, when we saw lots of tear gas-fired, lots of pepper spray, pepper balls. so it has been a much lighter hand put on the protesters here this afternoon. as you know, as night falls,
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things can often turn. remains to be seen if that will happen now. the curfew is in effect. they cleared the western side of the capitol pushing the protesters away from capitol building that was invaded earlier today, erin? >> alex, thank you very much. many reporters in other places in the world, amazing to see the images here. sort of just dumb founding. manu raju is on capitol hill. manu, amidst this, they're now reporting saying they're going to resume that joint session, not putting it off until tomorrow, they're coming back which is important. 8:00 p.m. eastern time. so as this started, right, you had langford objecting and mitch mcconnell broke in, we're going in recess now, that's it. but a lot just happened.
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so what's going to happen tonight? are they going to continue with the same planned objections or could something dramatically change? >> reporter: that's the big question right now is how long the proceedings will go, erin. there's a lot of pressure on the republican objectors to essentially drop the objections, move forward. remember how this actually has to play out. if one house republican objects, one senate republican objects, each chamber will recess up to two hours each, have a debate over electoral results coming in state by state. after two hours or so, there will be a vote, that could take one to two more hours, in addition to cleaning the chamber, this could go on for some time if there are several more states that will be objected to. the question is will they go forward given this is a doomed effort, there's no chance of succeeding in the capitol, a bipartisan majority of the house and senate plan to reject any efforts to throw out electoral
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votes awarded to joe biden. after today's display, more republican senators say it is time to move on, this is what happened and their view it is a disgraceful act, it is time to come together, there's pressure to expedite the proceedings. will they go along. one of the senators, josh hawley, indicated he plans to object to the state of pennsylvania's electoral votes, uncertain if he continues to do that. also georgia, kelly loeffler, defeated senator from georgia indicated last night she planned to come back and object to her state's electoral votes that have been awarded to joe biden. will she continue with that? also uncertain. but hope among republican leaders and democratic leaders is that they have a sense of a moment the country needs to come together, congress needs to come together, send a message that elections are free and fair and it is time to move forward. behind the scenes, some detractors had a strategy
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meeting. it is unclear what has come out of that. behind closed doors, moments ago, erin, senators have been briefed by top officials, dealing with floor proceedings, including law enforcement officials. the expectation is the process will begin potentially by next hour in the house and senate where they plow through the night, get it done, uncertain. but both sides are making it very clear, leaders on both sides saying the mob that came to the capitol is not going to stop congress from doing its work, the ultimate work is joe biden's electoral votes will be certified by congress. >> manu, thank you very much. kaitlan collins, near the white house. as all of this happened there was silence from the president, even as so many started to speak out, right? he puts out a video eventually where he talks about stealing of the election, and then his tweet which has now been removed by twitter, not even saying it is disputed, they removed it, these are things that happened. what was happening with him
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today? >> reporter: i want to know shall in light of what you said about removing the president's tweet, they tweeted saying his account will be locked for the next 12 hours following removal of those tweets. we will not hear from the president on twitter. the tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked. that's the president of the united states' twitter account. we may not hear from the president because a few moments ago, the white house called a lid, there are not going to be any more presidential appearances planned for the night. that comes after a day the president was wavering between telling protrump mob that breached the capitol to go home, but also defending them, saying he understands where they're coming from, and this is what's going to happen when an election has been stolen like he claims of course falsely that his has. this mob was fueled by the president's lies about the action. they're breaching the capitol, something that hasn't happened
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in over 200 years. in light of what manu just said, waiting to see what the lawmakers are doing as they get back together, are we going to see more planned objections by the president's republican allies. i am told the president is aware of efforts and discussions going on that they may abandon the effort and he does not want them to do so. he wants them to keep fighting, keep trying to object to joe biden's win, delaying the inevitable. the idea the president wants it to keep happening, despite what we watched play out the last several hours, still happening on capitol hill, is remarkable and it is coming as the president is more isolated probably than ever tonight inside the white house because his staff is disagreeing with him about his response, some of his allies disagree with the president on what's happening with this. his own staffers are coming out saying they agree with the vice president and he took courageous actions today. you're seeing the president incredibly isolated, now doesn't have access to his twitter account until at least 7:00
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tomorrow morning. we are not expecting to see him again at the white house for tonight. >> that's a stunning development for him. as kaitlan is making clear, that's how he was going to communicate, how he does communicate, calls a lid, because he can keep communicating. the president is now blocked from twitter for the next 12 hours. i want to go to donie o'sullivan live outside the capitol. you have been speaking to protesters throughout the day. everybody wants to know who these people are, what are they doing, what are they planning to do now. what are they telling you? >> yeah, erin. one of the questions i have been asking people is what is all of this for? what was all of the chaos, destruction, violence we saw today, what is it all supposed to achieve. and that goes back to conspiracy theories, goes back to the notion, the bs that the president of the united states is pushing claiming that he
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might be able to overturn this election, which of course he will not be able to. so people here, and kaitlan mentioned about the president's social media and twitter account being locked for the next 12 hours which is an absolutely unprecedented move, haven't seen that from any social media company in the entire trump presidency. all of this goes back to social media and to the trump media ecosystem. the people here are consuming media, they want to believe that trump did not lose the election. they don't want to believe biden won it. and there's echo chambers online, new and emerging outlets on youtube and cable, posing as news networks, forwarding the election lie. that's the basis of what we've seen here today, all a result of a conspiracy theory and playing out on the streets of the nation's capitol. >> donie, thank you very much.
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reporting, talking to people has been remarkable. i want to go to democratic congressman adam smith, he was inside the capitol as this all unfolded, chairman of the armed services committee. that means, sir, you're going back in. so tell me if you can where you are now, what's the status of the chambers and everybody actually going back in there at 8:00? what do you understand how this is going to work? >> i'm in my office in raburn, we are determined to go in and go to work. i was in communication earlier with leadership at the pentagon about the guard showing up, doing what they're doing now, clearing the capitol so we can get back to work. obviously as reporters have well documented, a very scary situation to have the president of the united states inciting a riot, but we in congress are determined to do our job, and joe biden will be president on january 20th, and it cannot come soon enough. >> the scene we did see today was sickening, disturbing.
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armed standoff on the house floor, drawn guns at the door. i keep showing that picture, it is in dellably imprinted in my mind. they forced their way inside the chambers, somebody sitting where pence was previeding siding mom before that. chairman, what went through your mind as you were in the room, being evacuated like you were in some other country, i mean, you never thought something like this would happen, did you? >> yeah. i mean, well, this morning i did, i actually went for a walk around the capitol, i could see what was going on around the washington monument, barriers up, limited number of capitol police, but no, i never foresaw this, what went through my mind was two things, get in touch with people i know at the pentagon, make sure. i heard what they were going to do with the guard and it was insufficient to what was happening.
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number one, make sure we get the security personnel in to get this cleared, but number two, what was going through my mind is what has been going through my mind a long time, extremism is an enormous problem in this country, and donald trump is just throwing matches all over the powder kegs in this country. the president, donald trump, is a narcissistic psychopath, let's just be clear about that. he stumbled his way into the presidency. what he believes from a policy standpoint is irrelevant. he is an egotist, cares about himself, period. the rest of the country that enabled him is what we need to work the fix. you need to understand the dangers of extremism. we have gotten to the point we don't understand rule of law matters. what's important about democracy is you have rules, you play by those rules. it isn't that you get your way all the time and if you don't get your way you have to fight until you do. that's not how it works. you play by the rules and when
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it's over, you accept the outcome and govern this country. we need to push back on the extremism. you get the point. >> i understand. i wanted to ask you, you mentioned you talked to defense leadership, you're chairman of the armed services committee. i want to ask, the president was silent and anything he said basically way to go, guys, this is what happens, mike pence said this has to stop and it has to stop now, he is the one that said that, not the president. and we understand that you talk about the national guard being there, mike pence is the one that spoke with the acting secretary of defense and chairman of the joint chiefs, not the president. >> yeah, right. >> ordinarily it would be the president of the united states that would do that. can you tell me who made these calls, what the significance of that may be? >> look, i can tell you exactly what happened. i don't know what mike pence's role. this was the mayor of
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washington, d.c. working with ryan mccarthy, secretary of the army, it is complicated, but the army is in charge of the national guard within washington, d.c., that's secretary mccarthy. they were communicating with each other as this thing exploded, the acting secretary of defense, mr. miller, and chairman of joint chiefs of staff milley got involved and then the justice department, i believe the acting attorney general is mr. rosen. and fortunately, all those people decided they needed to bring security to the situation. this is the one saving grace in all of this is that the president has abdicated his job, as near as i can tell, he wasn't on the phone to the same people. >> you're saying he is not in this, you talk about people making huge decisions and the president of the united states is not in that chain. >> here's the scary part about it, erin. that's reassuring to me, okay? because if the president was involved in that chain, number one, i don't trust that he
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wouldn't use the situation to seize power in an undemocratic, every coup is undemocratic, i suppose, but number two, he is incompetent. he cares about his own ego and himself. see that with the way he handled the pandemic and the vaccine now. and here's a really important point for people to understand. he relies on lies and that's what ted cruz and all these people are doing now. all the things they say about election irregularities are complete lies, complete and utter fabrications. >> i want to ask you one final question on that front. have you heard anything about their meetings, their thoughts now? are they going to continue with the planned objections or has this changed anything specifically for senators cruz and senator hawley? >> i have not heard. i don't have any direct information on that. i think your reporting covered the analysis perfectly, so i don't have anything to add to that.
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>> chairman, i appreciate your time. thank you very much for all that information. we'll be watching all of you tonight. thank you. >> thanks. >> i want to go to jonathan martin, he joins me on the phone, national political correspondent for "new york times," familiar to most of you watching inside the capitol now. jonathan, you're with lawmakers. >> yes. >> and you heard the chairman saying they plan to go back hopefully around 8:00 p.m. we don't know if there's going to be a shift in thinking or if they're going to continue, those planning to object, cruz, hawley, go ahead with the plan or if this changed anything. what are you hearing? >> i can tell you, i have been with members of the senate democrats and republicans the past four hours in a secure location in the capitol complex, talked to multiple senators, democrat and republican. two things. they're determined to reconvene tonight. they want to show some measure of solidarity in the face of the assault on the nation's democracy and they want to
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effectively go on with the show. there's great uncertainty whether or not these renegades in mitch mcconnell's caucus are going to again go forward with trying to stop the certification of the electoral college. i can tell you, there's very little appetite for that in the republican ranks among those senators who are not part of that group. we asked them multiple times, the senators, hawley and cruz, who are gathered, they have not indicated what their plans are, haven't heard from their aides. i think they're trying to figure out what the plan is. it is a fluid situation and the perception now of going forward after the capitol itself has been breached is pretty difficult politically to put it mildly. >> and the president is failing to take this on. jonathan, as we are speaking, we are watching some of the crowd begin to move. we're keeping an eye on them. brian todd is amidst them.
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i wanted to ask another question. i know you talked to mitt romney. >> yes. >> he summoned you when you got to a secure location. he said, quote, this is what the president caused today, this insurrection. mitt romney is not a man who throws words around without thinking about it, it is the correct word but it is the word he choese to use. >> it is. >> is that the feeling you got among the republicans? >> yes. i have never seen the kind of anger at lawmakers as i saw today. words like disgraceful, shameful, embarrassed. i have been covering mitt romney for about 15 years. i have never seen him so angry. his face, his voice, it was clear fury when he approached me. again, that happened, erin, right after the capitol was cleared. it was chaos in the capitol.
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i think that's the issue with lawmakers, they felt their physical safety was threatened in the capitol building. >> i appreciate it. thank you very much. so as i am speaking to jonathan, if you're watching the screen, this is happening now live. you see a line of riot police with the plastic riot gear. i want to go to brian todd who is in the midst of this melee we are seeing. tell me what you understand to be happening where you are? >> reporter: erin, metropolitan washington police, members of the national guard who have riot gear and shields just moved in over here by the reflecting bond on the west side of the capitol, about 200 yards from the capitol. they let the crowd stay there for several minutes and then they moved with shields and riot gear, pushed people out. this crowd of law enforcement officers in green jackets, metropolitan washington police had formed a line to the left,
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they pushed that line over, were chanlting move, move, to get protesters to leave. this could be, we don't know, of course, this could be the final push that they're making to try to drive people away. as they did that, of course, people started to melt away. to my right, people are just leaving the area. but actually if you want to walk with me here a little bit, we see a bit of a standoff where some people stopped over here, and they're not pushing them further from that point, but they could soon because they've been doing this in increments pretty much, both on the east side of the capitol and west side of the capitol. they'll push them a little further. stop, let them congregate, and wait a bit and push them further. but crowds are getting smaller. you can see more and more of them are starting to melt away. the show of force, right now it looks significant. we have to say as we have been saying all evening, it took them
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hours and hours to get here with these numbers of law enforcement, and for hours and hours law enforcement here was completely overwhelmed, outnumbered. they allowed the rioters to get up the steps of the capitol on both sides, allowed them to climb up on aris reiser built f the inauguration. the question is what will happen overnight. where will the security perimeter be pushed to. one of the main streets in the mall area, are they pushing them past the main street area. we'll see what happens. we'll be monitoring this for the entire evening to see where the security perimeters are going to be pushed. but it has taken hours and hours for them to finally start to push people away from main grounds of the capitol. this is a reflecting pond beyond them. now people are starting to melt away a bit. a fairly dramatic push. is it the final one?
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i doubt it. they have been doing it in increments. we'll see if people will finally just kind of disburse. i can tell you on the east side of the capitol, one of the protesters had gone up the steps had gone inside, were on the steps in large masses for hours and hours started to disburse, they did it on their own. they didn't do it with any push from law enforcement until the very, very end. erin, this is the situation on the west side of the capitol. you can see law enforcement officers over here pushing them even further. i don't know if you want to pan to the right, you can see them. there you go. they're pushing them little by little even further. i mean, the numbers of rioters, protesters, whoever the people are at this point are diminishing and they're starting to melt away. >> let me ask you about that. we see lines of the police law
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enforcement. brian, what's your sense of where these people came from, where they're melting away to? some of them said they're staying all night. there were obviously you have a mall full of people today. where are they going? >> reporter: erin, that's a very good question. i don't think we have a clear answer to that, whether they are going to other pockets, for small protests, resistance, or whether they call it a night. this unfolded in such an unpredictable way and things have changed very dramatically and quickly at various points of the day. we saw how quickly it unravelled when they reached barricades earlier on both sides of the capitol and got inside. you get a sense that this is starting to diminish, they're starting to melt away. where they're going to, i covered a lot of these types of events. it is almost impossible to
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determine where they're going to go to or whether they're going to organize anywhere, through social media and other means, they can organize, say we're getting together at this place at whatever, 10:00 or whatever, and we'll have to figure it out when it happens. there's no indication now where the people are going to go that we are aware of. >> all right. as we watch this with brian and our reporters with the crowds throughout washington, i want to go back to kaitlan collins. you've got new information on the vice president. we talked about he is the one that had conversations with the chairman of the joint chiefs and acting secretary of defense about the law enforcement, not the president. now you learned more about where the vice president is now and what he is doing. >> reporter: we have. it is raising real questions who is in charge when it comes to the white house, who is trying to facilitate out of the situation, whether it is president trump or the vice president. we just got the first update from his spokesperson all day.
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the only other thing we heard from the vice president is forceful condemnation of what you're seeing happening on capitol hill, telling protesters, demonstrators, rioters to go home. an update from his spokesperson says he is returning to the senate, he never left the capitol earlier today. he was on the senate floor when the pro-trump mob breached the capitol, he was escorted off the floor, taken to a secure location, didn't know much else about his whereabouts. he still remained at the capitol. his spokesperson says he was in regular contact with house and senate leadership, capitol police, the justice department and pentagon to facilitate efforts to reconvene congress, they said we will finish the people's business tonight. that comes after a statement we got from the pentagon saying they've been coordinating with the vice president about calling in the national guard. it did not mention donald trump. neither does this statement. it does not say the vice president has spoken to president trump in the last
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several hours. that's notable because as we know with vice president pence, he does not miss an opportunity to praise the president, to talk about their relationship, and of course as it is deteriorated, we are seeing this. i think it is raising legitimate questions about the president being isolated away in the white house talking about what he wants to see, complaining about pence not doing his bidding on capitol hill about who is in charge of the federal government and who is streamlining the efforts to restore normal in the capitol tonight. >> it is pretty stunning, the fact, kaitlan, not that we can say trump's name isn't on there, the fact they're putting out every single person that pence spoke to is making a clear point, it is a loud and clear point. the vice president is there, he is on capitol hill. he never left. now another development, a significant development, first lady melania trump, her spokesperson that stood by her
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through thick and thin is submitting her resignation effective immediately. they're saying the decision was motivated by violent protests and what we all saw on capitol hill. i want to go to kate bennett that broke the news. this is a very significant development. she has been loyal, an attack dog on behalf of the first lady. >> she was one of the first people on trump's campaign press team in 2015. this is certainly a remarkable development she decided to resign, two weeks left in the administration. however, she had a rocky few weeks. sources say she went back and forth with the decision, today was certainly the tipping point for her to decide her time with this administration and this white house is over effective today.
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>> i want to make the point, she's been loyal. she could have had a much longer job, et cetera, with this family, right? she's severing the ties and doing so, it is clear, right, because of how the president handled his election loss. >> yeah. this has been a very contentious few months for stephanie grisham. she bounced to the west wing, mark meadows came in, she was back in the east wing with melania trump. there were lots of back and forth with east and west wing. she wants to spend more time with her family, there are all those reasons. however, it is important to emphasize with just two weeks left the significance of this moment today of watching what we all watched play out on television and think that senior administration officials are watching it too. there are other aides that are considering this is it, this is my resignation. this could be what prompts it. stephanie grisham being the
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first to make that decision, submit her letter to the first lady, sources tell me has accepted the resignation, and it is taking part right away. >> thank you very much. as kate and i are speaking, you see police moving protesters back. brian todd explaining what we've seen here on the perimeter. you can see continued movement as they're trying to disburse protesters and members of the mob that are still gathered there. i want to bring in josh campbell. i have to lot to ask. first of all, what kaitlan was saying, that the vice president spoke to leaders of the house, senate, department of justice, to joints chiefs of staff, to the defense secretary, purposely not included he talked to the president, he hasn't talked to the president is what we're supposed to take from this. how significant that the vice
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president appears to be the one running things? >> certainly concerning. any time of calamity, you need national command authority in the united states to not only have visibility and have their finger on the pulse of what's going on but they need to be in a decision to make decisions to protect property, protect lives. that's striking to hear the vice president himself is the one who is potentially taking it on himself to reach out to agencies to remain in contact and possibly make decisions which raises a larger question, where is president donald trump. you think how they started, it began with president trump and his associates at a rally, whipping up fear among an angry crowd, and ending with multiple law enforcement officers injured, a woman shot after the pro-trump mob stormed the u.s. capitol. we heard tepid response from the president after that, but still, i have to tell you in the law enforcement world trying to deal with a mob, there are two main
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overarching things you need to deal with, tactical aspect on the ground, law enforcement as you see on the screen trying to push the crowd back, try to identify agitators to call them to lower the temperature, but there's also the larger issue, erin, what is motivating a violent mob to exist to begin with, and that goes back to president trump, who has continued to whip up fear even in his call for folks to go home, he still says the election was stolen, which is what is driving the anger to begin with. >> and there's a lot we don't know, josh, in terms of the exact timeline of who called whom and at what point. one thing we do know, right, is that law enforcement was not prepared for what happened, okay? we all saw that happen. then we have to figure out who called whom, what caused delays, et cetera. tell me what you know. >> well, there are a lot of questions for the united states capitol police at this hour and some of the other law enforcement in washington, d.c., and it pains me to say that
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because i can tell you having worked for the capitol police, they're among the most highly trained, most effective of anyone in and around d.c. knows about their presence. you see capitol police officers staged on independence, constitution, looking for threats to protect that building. for them to see the crowd coming and essentially it was a period of time today, we saw the crowd storming the stairs, storming the building, you didn't see a law enforcement presence. there are going to be a lot of people needing to answer questions about what type of threat assessment was done and how do you respond to that, as our colleague, alex marquardt mentioned earlier, can't help but roeflect on with these imags as we saw during the summer with black lives matter protests, you saw law enforcement very forcefully out there, you didn't see that today, that allowed rioters and groups of mob to come into the building and cause destruction. a lot of unanswered questions for law enforcement. >> thank you, josh.
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and i want to go to ef avan per. on these points, what do you know about why it took so long, frankly hours, we have seen the videos that are embarrassing, wasn't npolice presence, when there was, it was one person and people rushed by. why did it take so long to get it under control? >> i think the capitol police were overwhelmed, and should have been more prepared. i think from talking to law enforcement officials, erin, i can tell you there were a lot of conversations going on in the days before today's rally, and according to people i have been talking to, according to law enforcement officials i have been talking to, capitol police, metropolitan police, everybody said they were ready and prepared. but there was also an overhang of what happened over the
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summer. so there was a little bit of concern about having too muscular presence on the streets. that appears to have played a role in what was frankly just inadequate response, inadequate preparation. i run through the capitol mult times a week. during the summer when george floyd protests went on, even when they were getting ready to confirm the supreme court justice, there was a lot more heavy police presence. you couldn't get close to the building. today there was none of that. the contrast was striking. i think in coming days, we're going to hear more fingerprinting about what went on here. what i am told is that federal agencies, justice department agencies that were coordinating this, they can't just go to the capitol because that's a separate branch of government. they need to be asked to go there and by the time they were asked to go, the mob was already
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inside the building. that's what happened today. there will be a lot of recommendations, not clear who should have been making that request. they can't send the national guard, they have to be requested. >> look, it exposed a lot of things that you wouldn't want any foe of the country to see exposed. evan, you know the justice department department so well, do you have any sense of who is running things? i say this in the context of the vice president's office has now said who he was in touch with, and it is basically he that's been running everything, talking to joint chiefs, talking to defense, talking to department of justice. >> yeah. >> what can you add to that? do you have any better sense, is pence the one who ran things today? >> it appears he is first of all the one running the government. the president stopped being president some time ago. that much is clear, certainly
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for weeks, the president is not interested in doing the job that he claims he really, really wants. so the acting attorney general, jeffrey rosen, has been hold up at the fbi command center just a few blocks away in downtown washington, helping coordinate response with national guard, homeland security. there were hundreds of fbi, atf, dea, marshals, waiting to be deployed. they headed to the building to protect lawmakers and staff, but none of that happened until the request came in. so the question is was more, could more have been done before today, before the emergency actually happened. was there somebody who could have made some of the preparations take place. again, the president is not really doing the job, he is no longer president, not acting as president.
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everyone is sort of gingerly trying to tip toe around donald trump and his feelings as they try to respond to what's one of the most astonishing things that happened. >> evan, thank you. back to donie o'sullivan, he has been talking to people who are on the streets and what have you just heard, donie? >> reporter: hey, erin, that's right. the crowd is starting to dwindle here a bit. there was some movement from police in the past few minutes and there are still some trump supporters up in that area. just before you came to us, we heard phones all around playing an emergency alert going out to people's iphones, reminding them of the 6:00 p.m. curfew tonight. we are now almost two hours beyond that curfew. this emergency alert went out earlier today, obviously
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somebody has seen the need to push it out again. these folks don't seem to be going anywhere. to josh's and evan's earlier point, for supporters of the so-called law and order president, we have heard a lot of vitriol thrown at the police here. a lot of trump supporters are not happy that the police are moving them on, moving them from beyond the barricades that they broke down earlier. called the police traitors. one man walked away pushed away from police saying next time, we're coming back with rifles. >> all right, donie, thank you very much. let me go to the washington, d.c. attorney general carl ray seen. i want to give you a chance to respond. we heard donie reporting. >> it is extraordinary reporting. i commend cnn and our journalists for being out there. it's not been reported that
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journalists themselves have been threatened, pushed, assaulted, so i appreciate what you're doing. there are a couple of things i would like to comment on. one is the notion that the authorities, federal authorities were concerned about too much of a muscular presence. erin, i would ask you to show the picture during the black lives matter protests of the hoards of law enforcement from bureau of prisons, homeland security, nearly two dozen national guard states. look at the presence they had in front of the united states capitol when there was absolutely zero intelligence that black lives matter protesters in multi racial, multi ethnic, multi generational group of protesters were going to, quote, storm the capitol. then juxtapose that with what we
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saw today, with hate groups, militia and others who clearly had no concern for the rule of law go up to the capitol and essentially get in. there will be other days and recriminations and oversight to see exactly what happened, but that dichotomy is shocking. if you could tonight, please show the juxtaposition of those two responses to protect the united states capitol. >> so then what to do, right now what you've seen, you saw people storm the capitol, break windows, you know, what we saw was disturbing, shameful, embarrassing, and it was a national security threat on many levels, and yet as far as we know these people have just left. they're disbursing. richard grenell who is under criticism, former acting director of national intelligence, he tweeted anyone participating in violence must
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be arrested immediately. this is unacceptable, unamerican. i would imagine you agree with richard grenell, attorney general, or do you not? >> i totally agree. look, what occurred was an assault on the sim poymbol of democracy. congress, where the house of representatives and the senate actually is, elected by the people, in the jurisdictions of our 50 states, and represented by some territories, including represented by district of columbia. we had a day today where members of the congress and senate were seen pictured on the floor huddled, scared, having gas masks, being ushered into the basement, taken to secret locations. even vice president pence was ushered out of the capitol. i think now is the time for us to have a serious discussion and
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action. i'm calling on vice president pence to invoke the 25th amendment. that requires vice president pence to move and get a majority of the cabinet or majority of the congress to immediately remove the president because he so clearly is not fit for office. >> you heard what we've heard, attorney general, and you may know a lot more, but we know, right, that pence never left the capitol, he stayed there all day, he is there now, he will be back in the joint session. we know he was going to fulfill his constitutional duty and certify the win of joe biden. we know he is the one in touch with law enforcement and department of defense, everybody today. they didn't put the president on the list. what i'm getting at is do you understand for all intents and purposes that he is?
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the president is band from twitter. but is vice president pence essentially the president now? >> well, you know, i don't know. but if he is not, or even if he is, there's one way to formize this and make it clear to every single person, whether you like vice president pence or not, the fact is he is more fit for office for the last two weeks because an election occurred and president trump lost and there's a president-elect named biden, vice president-elect named harris, we need a commander in chief that will fulfill his constitutional responsibilities. i would ask the vice president, please go the next step. do your constitutional duty, protect america, stand up for democracy, and invehicoke the 2 amendment. all kinds of groups, including national manufacturers association, that's not a group of progressive or liberals, are
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calling for the invocation of the 25th amendment. it is a serious issue. i am calling on the vice president to act. >> attorney general, i appreciate your time. thank you very much. we are watching the law enforcement gathering here, disbursing the crowd. we are a few minutes away from congress, right, planning to resume, after all this, after having to evacuate, coming back to resume the electoral count. the big question is has something dramatic changed? this is an incredible moment and we just don't know. we'll be right back. how about no no uh uh, no way come on, no no n-n-n-no-no only discover has no annual fee on any card. who invented we're car vending machines and buying a car 100% online. now we've created a brand-new way for you to sell your car. whether it's a year old or a few years old.
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electoral college results. we still do not know if something has changed dramatically. are we going to pick up with the objections in the hours and hours of debate or are we going toe see a dramatic change of how things are handled by some of the key republican senators. professor, what are you expecting to happen tonight? it is hard to say this now but it is now even that much more important than it was earlier today. >> i do think that the leadership of the house and senate will pursue responsibility, mitch mcconnell in his statement before the insurrection that the president fi 's film took place. the president not had just his days in court but months in court. there is no reason the house and senate need to proceed at a
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stately pace. the electoral count act passed in an early century is not the binding procedure for this congress. i am glad they have not let the mobs prevent them from presuming. i think people should calm down. what's gone on is horrific. the president essentially engaged in in citing seditions. he waged war against the united states' government. whether he should be sidelined in the 25th amendment in some other way is yet to be seen. it is clear that the government can't allow itself to be taken hostage by domestic terrorists even when the chief terrorist of
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all seems to be the president of the united states. >> so, we have right now congresswoman kathy rogers, she changed where she stands on this. she will no longer challenge the election results. she gave a reason and i quote her, professor, what we have seen today is unlawful. i decided i will uphold the electoral college results and i encourage donald trump condemn and put an end to this madness. of course he's not going to do that. do you think any other republicans will follow suit. you knew ted cruz a long time ago when he was a young talented law student and he of course the face of this. he's the front of this, he and josh hawley. do you think that they'll change what they are doing? >> i can't get inside ted cruz's head. he was a smart kid but obviously he is not exactly lost his mind
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but decided to put into horrible use and josh hawley. these people has had adequate constitution. they don't give a damn about it. they want power and influence. i would suggest to them if they want any futures of american politics, they better break up and realize the american people do not like anarchy. we can agree for an angry mob entering the capitol and leaving one person dead is beyond unacceptable. they crossed the line and they have to pull back. i can't get inside their heads but if they have any concern for their own future, that's all they care about. if they have any concern for their own future, they better pull back. >> professor tribe, thank you
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very much. i want to go to wilmington right now, jeff zeleny is out front there. we heard the president-elect biden speaks genuinely and you have some new reporting from the biden's team, what are you learn sng. >> reporter: we are learning president-elect biden is going to appear here with his attorney general nominee as well as other senior members of the justice department le department, leadership team. mayor garland is the attorney general and everything that we have seen unfolded all day long in washington is certainly going to be on their plates. tomorrow we'll have an opportunity to hear from mr. biden who called this out of the most direct term possible. he was a sign of leadership today on this issue and we did not see any from the white house. we'll of course hear from him tomorrow we are told as well as judge garland who we have not
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gotten his view of the role of the doj in the post trump's era. that's one of the reasons he's chosen here to oversee all of this and the justice department in the post trump's era. everything adds to that message but one thing that mr. biden is trying to do, he says leaders can inspire or leaders can also incite, he of course blames president trump for that. >> calling him out directly and telling him to address the american people. thank you, jeff zellsel zeleny. mr. trump's secretary defense, james mattis, just released a statement. today's event was fermented by mr. trump, loud and clear. no beating around the bush here.
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what else then? you are saying the president of the united states fomented madness in the capitol, this person can still be president the next 14 days. >> yes, general dunn released a statement saying the same thing. you are talking about two people who would not say from the administration they came from but for two of them to step forward, it was significant. this was a shameful attack on our democracy and our democratic processes by a bun p ch of thug and punks. secretary mattis and dunford saw this exactly what it was. they're speaking out and so is
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president george w. bush. he released a statement before i came on the air saying "this is how election results disputed in a banana republic, not in our republic" not mentioning any words of the last republican president in history. >> i do think george w. bush's language brings back a lot of memory from his grand dad and dad. they all come from the tradition that they get really angry seeing people like trump in office. i do think a lot of people think they should be. jim acosta reported earlier that there is someone very close to rump in the white house was saying trump is out of his mind. so i think the 25th amendment is unlikely.
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impeachment is zero time for that. i do think they ought to consider a vote of sensor of both chambers. in 1954, that's what congress did to joe mccarthy and it destroyed his career. >> it is interesting when you give the possibility of something else. it is clear that the vice president was the one that was hands handling things today and not the president. >> i appreciate both of your time very much. thank you. >> thank you. now we are getting ready for that joint session to resume. history continues tonight to be made, our breaking coverage continues with anderson. good evening, if you are joining us, the capitol of our democracy on earth is realing rig realing -- reeling right now. one woman is shot and killed and
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three pipe bombs found. it is impossible to over state the significance of this moment. for the first time in generations, the capitol building was invaded andover on by violent mob. it was put under sieged and ter traumatiz terrorized and a man who have shown himself to be a coward and whip thped them into a frenzy o the election he lost months ago. and making money after them and overturning it and overturning the election, that's how he was making his money and claims abouif


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