tv CNN Tonight With Don Lemon CNN April 6, 2021 7:00pm-8:00pm PDT
i'm sorry. here is don lemon. >> what's up with that? >> you know, i was talking to park and, cannon, and i wanted to give her chance to speak about what's happening. i screwed up the time. i apologize. >> no, it's okay. i had her last week, and eight years or eight and a half years, whatever it is, you and i, we talked about this, considered it and said, there is no way the d.a. is going to do that, they are going it drop the case. >> you never know. she talks about john lewis, may he rest in peace, and brother lewis would have called this good trouble. but you know what? he can say it with a smile on his face. he paid the price of pain and
prosecution. it's a scary moment. yes, the d.a. probably drops it, it would be a huge injustice. >> let's look at the optics. >> it's bad optics. >> the woman is incoming on the door. >> i know. >> and the guys inside -- >> they arrested her. >> signing a bill -- >> but they still arrested her. >> beneath the picture of a slave plantation. >> and they arrested her. i'm with you. i am saying they arrested her. >> they arrested her. >> i would say, they will never arrest her. >> that's why she didn't speak sooner. we have been trying to get her. and her attorney said we don't know -- >> i don't blame him. he jumped in on a question that i meant for the representative. i don't blame him. this goes away and then that case remains. >> we are doing all kinds of legal stuff. they have this. we have what's happened in minneapolis and meat gaetz. >> "the new york times" reporting. >> joel greenberg is the name
that is going to loom large in this situation. not bob kemp, the man i had on last night. we don't know what happens with the extortion investigation that has to do with the dodger. it doesn't smell right. but joel greenberg, why? joel greenberg has been indicted for exactly what they say. >> and that case is a bigger name. >> oh, absolutely. but they are investigating him for the same things. that means nothing legally. but they absolutely know each other and there is some strange coordination between the two of them. it doesn't have to mean anything specifically. it doesn't even have be true. joel greenberg is in bad shape. he is a desperate man, and what do desperate men do? >> they flip. >> desperate things. >> let me tell you this. for all of the people out there watching and everyone who is saying, oh, this is just something that the biden administration is doing. this started with the trump
dodger. >> doj. >> did you hear trump defend gaetz? >> i heard him. it was silent. >> sounded like you when a check comes. >> what? >> no, no. m matte gaets? my pizza is here? >> i got to go. we'll see you. you can use that, don. >> all right. i love you, don lemon. >> i love you, too, talk to you later. this is "cnn tonight." we have some breaking news. "the new york times" reporting tonight that congressman matt gaetz sought a preemptive pardon for himself and his allies from the trump white house. a spoke man for gaetz has denied that his pardon request was related to the doj investigation of allegations involving sex trafficking and prostitution, including involving a minor. we have a whole lot more to come on this story tonight.
so make here you stay tuned. all the details coming in, including new reporting from a reporter who has followed his career over a decade now. i mean, we also have new developments in the trial of the police officer who kneeled op george floyd's neck for an excruciating nine and a half minutes. we can't unsee it. we all saw what happened. that police officer kneeling while george floyd begged for his life while he said, i can't breathe, over and over and over, while he called out for his mother. while a black man was dying with a white police officer pressing the life out of him. and today his fellow officers aren't defending him. they're not. you can hardly find a police officer to defend george floyd. there are a whole lot of people trying to make excuses about his past, whatever. ask a police officer if there is a defense. see what they say.
one after another, they took the stand today testifying in the prosecution's murder case against derek chauvin. an officer who trains minneapolis police in the use of force, who actually trained chauvin, saying the ex-officer kneeling on george floyd's neck was not what he was trained to do. >> sir, is this an mpd-trained neck restraint? >> no, sir. >> has it ever been? >> neck restraint, no, sir. >> is this an mpd authorized restraint technique? >> knee on the neck would be something that does happen, use of force that isn't unauthorized. >> if there was a safer example, the subject was under control and handcuffed, would this be authorized? >> i would say no. >> an expert witness, a los angeles police sergeant who
reviewed thousands of use cases testified the force chauvin used was excessive. >> initially, when mr. floyd was being placed in the back seat of the vehicle, he was actively resisting the officers. so at that point the officers were justified in utilizing force to try to have him comply with their commands and to seat him in the back seat of the vehicle. however, once he was placed in the prone position on the ground, he slowly -- resistance and at that point the officers, ex-officers, i should say, they should have slowed down or stopped their force as well. >> these are expert witnesses. this is important stuff. last week you had the emotion, right, from the eyewitnesses. this is the stuff that's going to make or break this case.
a medical response coordinator and cpr instructor testifying police are supposed to give first-aid when someone needs medical. she said being able to talk doesn't mean you can breathe adequately. >> if you don't have a pulse on a person, you'll immediately start cpr. just because they are speaking doesn't mean they are breathing adequately. >> this is another story we will have a not more on this trial and what this all means to the jurors. that as the president of the united states, joe biden, is speaking out today about the assault on the vote in georgia and praising corporations for taking a stand. >> for-profit operations and businesses are speaking up about how these new jim crow laws are just an thetcal to who we are. the other side to it, too, the other side, too, is when they, in fact, move out of georgia,
the people who need the help the most, people who are making hourly wages, sometimes can hurt the most. the best way to deal with this is for georgia and other states to smarten up. stop it. stop it. >> so i want you to remember this, the law makes it a crime to give food or water to voters waiting in line, a crime. corporations like delta and coca-cola are taking sides against the law. major league baseball is moving the all-star game out of atlanta into denver. that is too much for mitch mcconnell. the hypocrisy as it always seems to be is off the charts here. i will explain. make sure you sit down and watch, okay? facts first here. mr. mcconnell blasting corporations for taking a stand on voting rights. the same mitch mcconnell who, for years, has defended the first amendment right of corporations to hand over millions of dollars in political spending.
remember citizens united? but now mitch mcconnell says this. >> i am not talking about political contributions. most of them contribute to both sides. they have political action committees. that's fine. it's legal. it's appropriate. i support that. i'm talking about taking a position on a highly incendiary issue like this and punishing a community or a state because you don't like a particular law they passed. i just think it's stupid. >> it's stupid. suddenly, corporations don't have first amendment rights after all? hmm? not many disagree with them. tim scott tweeting this misleading comparison of a vote in georgia the vote in colorado and blaming, wait for it, the woks who are moving the all-star game out of atlanta.
again, facts first. daniel dale, who points out georgia's voting i.d. requirements are much stricter than colorado's, not to mention the fact that colorado mails every active registered voter a ballot. more than 90% of coloradans voted by mail, even before the pandemic. funny how facts are stubborn things. and colorado allows voters to register on election day. so, don't bring in the woks, okay? the former president, you know, you knew he would get in the middle of this, didn't you? putting out statement complaining about woke cancel culture in all caps. in case you might have missed it, and our sacred elections, and another calling for a boycott of baseball and what he
calls all of the woke companies that are interfering with free and fair elections. are you listening, coke? delta? et al.? boohoo. cancel culture. okay. again, you've got to watch this because this is from the king, as we say, the kang where i'm from, of cancel culture. calling for democrats calling for boycotts of companies that offend them. i give you the king of cancel culture who got it in another dig at major league baseball today. here it is. >> well, i have, you know, look, i'm just not very interested in baseball for the last number of years. i think it's not appropriate. you know, you look -- you want
to find a game, it's on every channel and yet you can't find anything. the weirdest thing. it used to be a nice, easy thing to follow. and you know what i mean by that. it was on one network and it was nice and good and beautiful. today you don't even know what the hell you are watching. so i would say bot cot baseball. why in the? >> never heard of espn, right? if you want to know where the sports channel, baseball is. why not boycott mlb? the king of cancel culture can add that to his list, okay? because there is coke, there's delta, there is major league baseball. there is more from the king of cancel culture. there is rolling stone, there is -- i mean, there is too much. i can't even fit it on the screen. there is hbo, there is apple, there's macy's, univision, fox
news, at&t, the nfl, there is harley-davidson, there is nike, starbucks, goodyear, comcast, t-mobile, geico, oreo, mexico, "the wall street journal" editorial board, nbc, even glen fid i can whiskey, that one praising a scott irn former for refusing to sell his lapd to trump. who was canceled? not by cancel culture, but wby what? the voters. the hypocrisy and the double-speak and the shiny objects and the lying continues. know your facts, people. it's not cancel culture. corporations are saying, this
doesn't line up with our values. and now the party of former party of family values suddenly has a problem with values. interesting. we have breaking news. "the new york times" reporting congres congressman matt gaetz privately sought pardons for himself and his allies in the final weeks of the trump presidency. that's next.
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developments in an investigation into florida congressman matt gaetz. "the new york times" is says gaetz tried to get an outgoing pardon, he privately asked the white house for blanket preemptive pardons for himself and unidentified congressional allies for any crimes they may have committed. a spokesman for gaets, political operatives have conflated a pardon call from representative gaetz where he called for president trump to pardon everyone from himself to his administration to joe exotic with these false and increasingly bizarre partisan allegations against him. those comments have been on the record for some time and
president trump re-tweet twoed the congressman who tweeted them out himself. gaetz now even fundraising off of this scandal, making a plea to from his supporters to fight back against what he calls a smear campaign. a source says gaetz is unlikely to lose his spot on the house judiciary committee unless he is indicted. mark caputo for politico florida. jennifer rogers, a former assistant u.s. attorney for the southern district of new york. good to have you on. good evening. jennifer first. i want your reaction to the stunning "new york times" report that gaetz sought a blanket pardon from the former president during his final weeks in office. the white house lawyers reportedly saw it as a non-starter. this is a clip from gaetz, his appearance on fox in november and then we'll talk. >> president trump should pardon michael flynn, pardon the thanksgiving turkey, pardon everyone from himself, his
administration officials from joe exotic if he has to. you see from the radical left a blood loss that will only be quenched if they come after the people who work hard to animate the trump administration with the policies and the vigor and the effectiveness that delivered for the american people. so i think that the president ought to wield that pardon power effectively and robustly. >> oh, boy. so "the new york times" says that is unclear if gaets fwaits or the white house knew about this. how does this sound now? >> how to sounds to a former prosecutor, consciousness of guilt. so the notion that he wasn't to the former president to ask for a blanket preemptive pardon doesn't go to the elements of the crime that are reportedly being investigated. if they end up at trial with matt gaetz in the defendant's chair, you better believe they will try to put in this evidence because it demonstrates time he went to former president trump
to ask he knew did something wrong and he was seeking coverage js i want to read from this reporting. some trump associates speculated that mr. gaetz's request for a group pardon was an attempt to camouflage his own potential criminal exposure. is this something that investigators will be pursuing, do you think? >> i think that they will just because it's out there. listen, while you are investigating someone and t talking to everyone about what they might know, this is something they would explore. it doesn't really go to the charges at issue except to the extent that some of the people know about this also know about those charges. i suspect they would look into it. if it's true that he was trying to get people, other people pardoned because they had involvement, of course it's relevant. if it looks like he was covering up for what he was doing it's relevant at trial. >> mark, you have known the gaetz family for years. you have a new piece out in pilot kpoe on gaetz and you
focus on the friendship with joel greenberg, a former florida tax collector when faces serious charges, including sex trafficking a minor. what do you know about their friendship? >> well, they were sort of kind of two peas in a pod. joel greenberg, seminole county tax county in the orlando area was elected to his office in 2016 at the same time that gaetz, state legislator, won his congressional office. they are brash, unapologetic populous maga republicans, and they shared an interest in cryptocurrency and bitcoin and also shared an interest in, i will say this delicately, dating young women. when i say young women, i am talking about -- maybe i'm dating myself here, women in their 20s. and, you know, there is expensive record if you talk to associates, friends, acquaintances of the two men where they frequently would be
seen out together. greenberg according to friends and associates idolized matt gaetz because gaetz was this fox personality. he had the ear of the president. and he was kind of a widely recognized figure in republican politics. and he knew that matt gaetz liked the ladies, and greenberg, dor according to them, had this seeking arrangements website and brought them into the fold and supplied matt with a bevy of dates. and this lasted for quite some time. soon after getting into office, according to the 33-count federal indictment of joel greenberg, which is wide ranging and an interesting read, may of 2017 he allegedly was having sexual relationships with a 17-year-old. some of our reporting indicates she might have gone on to become a pornography star currently schl she is not commenting or
wasn't answering our messages for comment. the investigation grew out of a smear campaign that joel greenberg tried to accuse his rival of being a pedophile. the feds eventually got the case and covered a host of different crimes, alleged crimes, that greenberg apparently committed. and it was around this time that gaetz started to distance himself from greenberg, but when the investigators start today find that greenberg was involved with a 17-year-old woman allegedly and presumably saw messages between him and gaetz concerning dating women, that's when the investigation, august of 2020, began into gaetz. and so since that time he has at least been a subject of investigation by gaetz's own acknowledgment. not a target, but a subject, as, you know, i am not a lawyer, but i can tell you, you don't want
to be a subject of a federal investigation. i have to put a blanket allegedly all over that. this is all alleged. >> again, the other thing is, is that, you know, we -- we only have anonymous voices so far. we don't have any names. >> and denials from the parties involved. >> right. so, you know, i think it might be an important caveat. "the new york times" report, i am not throwing shade on that, those are trump white house officials, many known not to have liked gaetz prior to all of this. and then these alleged -- you know, inappropriate relationship with a 17-year-old or paying for sex, both of which gaetz deniegs. we have in names. we have no dates. we have no facts. so i'd like to see more of that. >> okay. let me ask you this since we are on this. you say that there is -- d in your reporting there is a fund nenl loneliness about gaetz's political career, and that's why
he turned to trump and fox. explain what you mean. >> right. gaetz was an effective legislator in the florida legislature. it's a hock to gshack to go fro that to congress. regardless of who is no charge, it doesn't do a hell of a lot, relatively speaking. and soon after getting into congress gaetz realized he is -- it revolves around seniority. he was a freshman. and he didn't have a lot of power. and he saw that the way in which to exercise power was to be the president's number one guy defending him on fox. and he set about doing that. in the process of doing that, gaetz was very brash and caustic. he made a lot of enemies in his own party. now donald trump has been voted out of office. the republicans in the house are in the minority. as gaetz told other people, he is the minority of the minority,
looking for a way out -- >> he is a back bencher. >> yeah, he is a back bencher where a lot of the folks on the back bench don't want him around them. and so now is he going it run for re-election? he was thinking of not doing it before. i would think yes, because one of the things that allows him to still kind of have power and push back against these so far anonymous allegations leaking out of the doj is to have a political position of power that is to have -- >> i think it's interesting. he is going to be speaking at this women's summit at the trump national golf course on friday. is he going to keep that appearance? >> oh, yeah. knowing gaetz, he is probably going to make a joke about the whole situation. one of the things that he believed in doing, similar to trump, is not backing away. he doesn't want his lawyers speaking for him because he thinks that makes him weak.
>> jennifer, just so -- i want to move on to the next segment here. anything we need to adhere? i don't want to get us in in trouble, you know, legally with all of this. like i said, a blanket allegedly and a denial from both parties here. anything that mark said that stood out to you? >> well, you know, i just think it's notable that matt gaetz with all of these rumors swirling and of course they are not officially charges yet, he is not doing himself any favors. that goes hand in hand with the reporting about his personality and what he does. he jumps in and lashes out without really thinking through the consequences. you know, we will have to see if that comes back to bite him in a legal way. >> thank you both. i appreciate your time. he says businesses should stay out of politics when it comes to commenting on laws that he likes, but when it comes to corporate money in his pocket, senator mitch mcconnell says that's fine. stay with us. forget what your smoking-hot moms and teachers say,
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mitch mcconnell on the attack against businesses telling them to stay out of politics. his warning coming as companies take a stand against georgia's new law that restricts voting access. mcconnell's comments flying in the face of years of that he has spent supporting corporate involvement in politics, while he claims it's stupid for them. >> he says corporate contributions are fine. good evening. david, i want to talk about mitch mcconnell, the hypocrisy is astounding. there hasn't been a big are supporter of corporate money in poll politics and now he is saying he is okay with their money but not their opinions. >> yeah, when you say he has been touting roles, the proper
role for corporations to give money for years, it's decades. i mean, this is actually one of mitch mcconnell's hobbyhorses in his time in public service, saying that corporate money equals free speech, and they should be able to give freely. he fought hard against going in the way back machine here, the finance reform efforts and others. so to hear him try to separate out now donations are one thing, but they really shouldn't express opinions on the issues of the day that may be dividing the parties, that to me seems like a whole new definition of what political participation can be. >> amanda, the g.o.p. is railing now against cancel culture at every turn. yet mcconnell is telling businesses what to do. trump is calling for a boycott of woke companies and mlb.
listen, he is guilty of what he is accusing of the mlb of doing, because he is -- the mlb is the one who decided it to take the game out. it wasn't democrats. stacey abrams and others did not want the all-star game taken out of atlanta. >> yeah. this is all about vengeance and grievance. i think it's useful to rewind a little bit and think about why we are here. we are here in this political situation because of the election lies that donald trump pedaled and people like mitch mcconnell enabled to try to win a race in georgia. we are here because of the capitol insurrection. we are here because of the restrictions of voting laws that republicans have been pushing across the nation. not in georgia. and so when mitch mcconnell surveys these events, he has decided he is a victim. a lot of other republicans have because they don't like the fact that joe biden and others accuse of them embracing jim crow policies. now, i think that's a heavy charge. i think jobe should be asked to
explain why he makes that comparison. if you put that aside and if you want to talk about mitch mcconnell, he has always been a highly partisan transactional figure. what has changed in this post-trump era is that the republicans have dropped all pretense of free market, economics, and competition and are all in on the bullying and the culture wars. so that is where mitch mcconnell's positioning himself. it may be bluster. we will see. but that is the state of play at this moment. >> david, similar question. republicans love blaming president biden and the democrats for cancel culture, but these companies are moving on their own, right? senator warnock, stacey abrams, they didn't even want a boycott. >> yeah, that's an important note, don. you played earlier in the show president biden sort of expressed both sides of this, that it is not just an easy thing to say, hey, go ahead and boycott. it hurts some of the very people that they are actually trying to
protect with voting rights in these battles. and joe biden acknowledged that. he said he would, indeed, support the decisions that these companies and organizations are making on their own, whatever those decisions are, but he understood the other side of the coin of this, as you note. this is why stacey abrams has been reluctant to go full bore and call for these boycotts. >> there is more than 360 bills across the country that would make it harder to vote. what's happening in georgia will it have an impact in other states pushing these bills, do you think? >> everyone's watching this. and it gets extremely messy because, as we learned and we know, all of the states administer their own election law. and so what i have been talking with people about and trying to encourage people to advocate for whatever the gold standard is in voting rights policies, because you look at a state like georgia what they are pushing and then republicans get upset. why are you seeing georgia when
new york has more restrictive laws. maybe there is a landing place for the corporations who are ready to wield from influence so say, hey, these are the five things we are looking for. automatic voter registration, early voting, no excuse absentee to guarantee access. finding a sweat spot that might solve this problem. otherwise, it will be a food fight, a nasty fight all the way through the next midterm election and i pray not the next presidential one. >> well, don't get your helps up, amanda, right? david, listen, the president and democrats moving ahead with the $2 trillion infrastructure plan. is mcconnell being out-maneuvered right now? >> well, listen, mcconnell is now in the role of minority leader, right. so chuck schumer is finding a path with senate rules to try to see if there is a way to get biden's agenda, this
infrastructure bill and others that may follow, through the senate with democratic-only votes if mitch mcconnell continues to make clear that republicans want to play this playbook that is just a wall of opposition to the biden agenda. i don't know that he is get out maneuvered yet. just getting your game plan in place for chuck schumer doesn't mean he has the votes yet. there is miles to go for the battle of this infrastructure bill. >> thank you both. expert after expert testifying testifying derek chauvin used excessive force against george floyd. our own experts weigh in next. the former police captain in charge of the ferguson riots right after this.
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after witnesses testified today that chauvin kneeling on george floyd's neck is not an approved restraint tactic, one calling it an excessive use of force. chauvin's attorney taking advantage of some contradictions. c captain ron johnson, so that happy to have you here. appreciate you joining. >> how are you today? >> very well, thank you. what did you think about today and hearing from multiple training officials, including a minneapolis police use of force instructor? was it effective? >> i think it was. i think the officers from the department showed that they had definite policies and procedures that there were to be followed. they talked about great training records. i am still waiting to see from the testimony of the officer from lapd. >> let's talk about that. the lapd use of force expert described chauvin force against george floyd as excessive and
the minneapolis pd officer said chauvin's neck restraint would not be an authorized use of force. do you believe derek chauvin followed his training, sir? >> no, i don't. i think initially, and i think we heard that from different witnesses, initially there may have been been a call, there was a cause to -- for use of force, but then there came a point where there wasn't. there was compliance and there should have been de-escalation, and also lesser use of force in that situation that we saw played out on the tv. >> at times the witnesses did extra zikt each other. watch this. >> have you ever been trained or trained others to say that if some person can talk, they can breathe? >> yes. >> you train officers that if a person can talk, it means they can breathe? >> no, sir. >> is that a contradiction to you?
>> it is. i think that is at the risk that the prosecutor runs when he is bringing in too many trainers to talk about the same issue, that they talked about it. i think he brought some in earlier. when you bring in too many people on the same subject. you are going to run into that possibility of them conflicting each other in their statements. >> i want you to listen to this particular line of questioning from the defense. he is returning to one of his key arguments, blaming the crowd as a distraction for chauvin. watch this. >> does it make it more difficult to assess the patient? >> yes. >> does it make it more likely that you may miss signs about a patient experiencing something? >> yes. >> and so the distraction can actually harm the potential care of the patient? >> yes. >> what do you think of that exchange? i want to put it into context. the crowd in front of cup foods
was pleading with the officers to check george floyd's pulse and get off of his neck. >> i think you are absolutely right. an angry crowd -- that crowd was not an angry crowd. i think if that crowd saw the officers giving mr. floyd medical attention, we would have seen a calmer crowd. when we look at the officers on the scene, there was one officer interacting with the crowd, and i have been in front of unruly crowds and you have been on the side with unruly crowds, and that crowd would definitely -- be the definition of an unruly crowd. >> the defendants got johnny mercil to admit that when paramedics arrived it appears the officer's knee was on george floyd's shoulder. would that neg fwat the other minutes that tderek chauvin's
knee was on george floyd's neck? >> no, moving it at the last minute, once paramedics really didn't change what happened there. >> and you have heard a good reason. have you heard a good reason why chauvin didn't render any medical aid? because that's what his training, he was taught, he was supposed to administer medical aid. >> no, i have not. you know, one of the officers said that he didn't feel a pulse for three minutes. and so right there was the signal that there should have we know three minutes when officers said there was no pulse, and officer chauvin heard that. >> it's always a pleasure having you. be well. >> thank you. a 65-year-old asian woman attacked. no one around did anything to stop it. and take this. now there are consequences.
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there's just too much evidence. kill weeds not the lawn with roundup for lawns products. take this. two new york city door help fired after they closed the doors to their building's lobby while a 65-year-old asian woman was punched and kicked outside. here's a video of last week's attack. the woman was on her way to church when she was beaten just beyond the door of the midtown manhattan apartment building. then the staff inside the building, you see it? and what do they do? they close that door. it's happening outside. and they close the door. so later on the doormen opened the door and they go outside. the building's owner saying they flagged down an nypd vehicle but
emergency things were not followed. others said the doormen acted to secure the building by closing the front door. they commended them for their response in rendering aid to the victim and alerting medics. they have initiate the process to challenge the determination. adding we take all forms of discrimination seriously. he allegedly made anti-asian statements toward the women. the attack, one of many anti-asian crimes, a growing tend all across this country. in new york, for example, the nypd recording 31 anti-asian hate crimes this year. that number the same time last year? zero. republican congressmen matt gaetz facing a sex trafficking investigation. tonight a report he bawanted a
for the same medications as the vet, but for less with fast free shipping. visit petmeds.com today. there's new developments tonight on the embattled matt gaetz, under investigation by the justice department over allegations of sex trafficking and prostitution. the new york times reporting that gaetz asked the trump white house in its final days for a preemptive blanket pardon for himself and unidentified congressional allies. also tonight mitch mcconnell slamming american corporations for taking a public stand against the georgia restrengthive voiting law but saying it's fine for companies to make political contributions. president biden applauding businesses for speaking out and taking