tv CNN Newsroom With Jim Acosta CNN October 23, 2021 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT
weighing an estimated 4400 pounds, which is more than a car. researchers had to use a crane to pull it out of the water. 10 feet long, 9 feet wide. researchers think it's part of the largest bony fish species in the world. you were live in the cnn newsroom. we begin with a question we asked so often on this show. why are so many republicans opposed to getting to the bottom of the january 6th attack? we saw it again this week when only nine house republicans were willing to join with democrats in voting to hold former trump adviser, steve bannon, in contempt for refusing to testify or hand over documents to the january 6th committee. so because we wanted answers and because a lot of republicans don't want to come on the show, we went up to the hill to find them. just ask you why you decided not to vote in favor of holding in
contempt? >> because the entire kmcommissn is a sham from the beginning. >> what about the majority? does that mean people can -- >> the premise is all wrong. i have no idea any of the d debates or discussions that have occurred in this committee and it's based on a committee that was structured to be a political committee from the beginning. that's how it was set up. that's the problem. you undermine the rule of law when you don't have the foundational principles. >> we were walking at a pretty fast clip there. that was republican congressman, chip roy, of texas. saying that the january 6 committee is a sham, but just a reminder, it was republicans who blocked the creation of an independent commission to investigate the attack. i also caught up with marjorie taylor greene of georgia. there was drama with her on the house floor after she confronted two members of the january 6 committee, waving her hands and calling the vote on steve bannon
a joke. so i tried to ask can congressman about that moment and here's what she told me. what about the con ffrontation with congresswoman cheney? >> she's a traitor. >> she's a traitor? >> yeah. >> how can you say that? >> pretty easy. >> when we caught up with greene a second time, she had more choice words for the january 6 committee. >> what was the rationale behind your vote? >> rationale behind my vote is i'm not self-absorbed like the rest of these jerks here in congress. they're all ignoring inflation. people can hardly buy food. because they're self-absorbed. all they care about is congress. they don't care about the american people. all you want to talk about is your trump derangement syndrome and all you want to talk about is january fth -- >> why protect bannon? >> because i care about american people. >> the interview ended soon after fellow republican
congressman pete sessions of texas walked into the middle of the conversation. >> you doing okay? let's get out of here. >> but not steve bannon. >> hey, what about all the people that are rotting in jail? why don't you worry about them. >> and that was the end of that. democratic congressman jamie raskin of maryland joins me now. he's a member of the committee. you had that run-in with congressman greene. she's calling liz cheney a traitor. have you heard her call any of the capitol rioters traitors? was this something she was saying to you on the floor the other day when talking about this bannon contempt vote? >> it certainly captures the tenor of our conversation, jim. look, let's start with this. liz cheney is a great constitutional patriot who is redeemed to the idea of
constitutional patriotism. holding your loyalty to above political party or more importantly, a single individual who purports to speak for the entire party. so she has demonstrated what fidelity to the constitution means and those words about treason and traitorousness i'm afraid rebound on marjorie taylor greene. >> and we just heard your colleague on the republican side, chip roy, say that the select committee is undermining the rule of law. what's your response? this is sort of the same talking points that you get from republicans. >> you got it. >> yeah. >> i think you've got it. what we're hearing now essentially is them taking our language to describe what they're doing, which is betraying the rule of law, trampling the rule of law to find subpoenas, violating the constitution and they just put it out in the world as free floating ideas attacking us without it being tethered to any kind of factual predicate.
so the truth is that the bipartisan january 6 select committee has received tons of cooperation from lots of witnesses and lots of people who are doing their civic and legal duty by telling us everything they know about what happened on january 6th. then you have a handful of people and steve bannon, chief amongst them, who simply defined the subpoena and thinks he's above the rule of law and obviously we're not going to have that in the house of representatives voted this week to refer information about him to the attorney's office. but it's not slowing us down for one minute. we continue to assemble lots of information about the violent insurrection component and the political coup that is trump's coup against mike pence and the congress in order to block the
counting of electoral college votes for the first time in american history. >> the last part that donald trump was essentially orchestrated a coup. do you feel like you have the evidence to prove that at this point? you said you've been accumulating all of this voluminous? is there enough to demonstrate that is what the former president did? >> he was impeached for inciting a violent insurrection and there was, well, a robust bipartisan effort in the senate to vote to convict him for inciting violent insurrection. he beat the constitutional spread of two-thirds but still had a super majority of the senate. 57 senators from both parties voting to determine that he engaged in that conduct. but the coup part of it, the evidence is coming very starkly
into view as everyone seems to know by now, jeffrey clark has been subpoenaed and we expect him to appear before the committee on friday and he was obviously integrally involved in the plan to get the department of justice to cast doubt on joe biden's electoral college vote majority and to undermine that majority and to block the certification of electors so we're very hot on the trail of this component of the events of january 6th. >> and cnn has learned your committee is focused on how events and people associated with january 6th were funded including the stop the steal rally is that then president trump spoke at that day. what does that mean? do you believe people may have been paid to break into the capitol? are you talking about, are we just talking about the payment for bus rides and hotel rooms and that sort of thing? >> look, i know there's tremendous and intense interest across the country in what we're finding and you know, bits and pieces of information may have
leaked out in different ways. but you know, i'm going to reserve judgment on our final conclusions until we get there and we're eager to assemble this into a report for the american people. but will i say you don't knock over the u.s. capitol and wound 140 officers and storm the capitol and lay state of siege to the congress without any money being behind it. this was an expensive operation and lots of money was spent. lots of money was raised and we do intend to get to the bottom of the financial dimension of this attack on american democracy. >> it seems like steve bannon potentially knew what was going to happen on january 6th. let's talk about what he said just the day before the insurrection. >> all hell is going to break loose tomorrow. just understand this. all hell is going to break loose
tomorrow. it's not going to happen like you think it's going to happen, okay? it's going to be quite extraordinarily different. all i can say is strap in. >> what do you think steve bannon knew and do you think, congressman, that you will get him in front of your committee? in frochbnt of the cameras? in front of the american people at some point? >> well, i've got no doubt he's going to have to comply with the law like everybody else who is subpoenaed by congress. so i'm really quite confident of that. but he obviously knew a lot. he was speaking there as an insider from a position of authority and inside knowledge. he assured us that all hell was going break loose. it was not going to be what anybody dreamed of. of course, we were all focused on the parliamentary back and forth. the attempts to object lawfully to the casting of electors from particular states, but what he was indicating was that the
outside lawless violent attack on congress would be coordinated with both of the legitimate parliamentary maneuvers, but also the lawless attack on mike pence. the attempt to coerce him to declare lawless powers to reject electoral college votes. and there was also apparently an effort to suggest to the president that he declare marshall law. that he invoke the insurrection act. so all of these different components, we're trying to figure out how they were coordinated and part of a general plan to destabilize the american democracy and overthrow the lawful election result. we came way too close for my taste to a coup, an insurrection, and an overthrow of american constitutional democracy and i'm glad we've got
a very strong, powerful, bipartisan committee that's determined to get to the truth even though we have people attempting to block us at every turn. >> there's a lot of reporting just coming out about what may have been going on at the willard hotel here in washington. that there were meetings going on involving trump aides, trump allies, people like steve bannon. is your committee digging into that? trying to get to the bottom of what was going on at the willard hotel, of all places? >> every insurrection needs a headquarters. that is part of our charge, too, to determine not just who were the foot soldiers, but who were the generals and the lieutenants and how exactly all of this was coordinated. and so again, it doesn't surprise me that a lot of money was spent at the hotels for conference space and areas for people to organize and coordinate all of the different activity on the ground and behind the scenes to pressure senators and representatives and
of course, mike pence. and you know, i heard with my own ears, them chanting hang mike pence, hang mike pence. that's a pretty extraordinary thing for a pro-trump crowd to be chanting hang mike pence. you've got to wonder who would give the green light for that to be the signal to the crowd. and to me, it just seems unlikely that any of that focus would be taking place against mike pence unless it came from the top and of course, donald trump continued to tweet through the afternoon his denunciation of mike pence and his failure of courage and his cowardess to do the right thing. >> and this week on cnn, you said the nation came as close to fascism as we ever want to come. what happens if trump runs again? what happens in the hypothetical 2024 scenario that people have talked about extensively. talked about yourself. a gop-held congress still under
the grip of trump, refusing to certify a democratic presidential victory if that were to occur in 2024. >> well, the 2022 congressional election is a fundamental importance for this reason because it will determine who is sitting in congress likely when the 2024 presidential rolls around. i mean, if we had had gop majorit majorities in the house and senate in 2020 that were under the thumb of donald trump the way they are now, we could have had a very different result. so that's a terrifying prospect from the standpoint of electoral democracy in our presidential elections. the electoral college creates enough problems as it is but if there are people that are going to try to exploit every phase of the electoral college process to turn it into another partisan referendum, we're really up the creek and so there are things that we should do to try to
formalize the fact that the vice president's role is a ministerial and ceremonial one regardless of which party is in power and that we don't overthrow the popular results of elections in the states that come up with results that are more to the liking of a particular candidate or the congress. >> right. you can't have the vice president be sort of this you know, super executive, you know, power who can just sort of throw election results out willy-nilly. >> the vice president would be essentially appointing the president. >> exactly. congressman, thanks so much for your time. we appreciate it. >> my pleasure. >> thank you. decades after the phrase, follow the money, became part of the national lexicon, the january 6 committee is doing just that. trying to untangle the web of financial ties around stop the steal rallies. we'll get reaction from swomeon who knows what's it's like to
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(battle sounds stop) ♪ ♪ you're looking at live pictures from newark, new jersey, where former president obama is expected to speak at any moment. he's there to campaign for governor phil murphy who's running for re-election. we'll take the event live as soon as he takes the stage there. follow the money, that's what the house select committee is doing. they're setting their sights on the financing behind the people associated with the day's events including that pro-trump stop the steal rally where then president trump spoke. joining us, the famed journalist whose reporting from "the washington post" helped bring down nixon. carl bernstein, good to be with you. to this day, anyone who's seen
all the president's men remember it is line, follow the money. we were speaking to jamie raskin. it sounds as though the financial trail, financing, bankrolling, whatever these insurrectionists were up to, might be important to all of this. >> that's what part of the power of a congressional investigation is all about. it's to subpoena and obtain the documents and evidence of whether there is money spent. where it went. who funded it. and what did it fund. of course in the case of nixon where we first at "the washington post" were able to follow the money trail and then the senate watergate committee followed the money trail and it established beyond any doubt that the conspiracy to undermine the constitution in the united states and subvert the electoral process by the president of the united states was a massive conspiracy led by richard nixon and his aides close etst to him. so if we look now, trying to
nail down those corners, but we are also looking at what we know to be a massive conspiracy. led by the president of the united states and his aides and his lawyers to undermine, to have a coup, undermine the american electoral process in a way that exceeds that of watergate. really what we saw was the president of the united states in an act of civil war against the united states. we haven't seen anything like this by a president of the united states in our history. you have to go back 160 years to the civil war. people like jefferson davis who declared war on america. and that's what donald trump has done here. he has decided and we see it in the evidence and we see it in bannon and what bannon did and what we know from the record already. look, donald trump is not
capable organizationally of running a conspiracy in the minutia, but we know he wanted those results. he wanted the coup. he demanded the coup. and what we have now is a conspiracy led by the president of the united states such as we have never seen in our history to undermine who we are as a democracy. >> is trump in a better position than nixon was in the sense that those around him are even more loyal than what we saw during watergate it seems and remain so to this day? >> no. trump is in a better position because the republican party has become craven. has become an instrument of his own contempt for the constitution of the united states. the republican party has enabled and participated in this massive cover up of what happened on january 6th. we have the speaker, pardon me, the minority leader of the
house, kevin mccarthy and of the senate, senator mcconnell, with no interest whatsoever in investigating an insurrection such as we saw on january 6th? complained that this congressional investigation is partisan when in fact they assured there would be no huge bipartisan investigation has happened in watergate. in watergate, there was a unanimous vote by the senate of the united states, unanimous. to investigate what happened in the election of 1972. mcconnell, mccarthy ensured there would not be a similar investigation so we're left with what this house committee is doing with real due diligence. >> and given the experience you have covering these types of scandals for so many years, do you think that the justice department that the attorney general will proceed with some sort of criminal contempt charge
that would force bannon to testify before the -- do you think that will happen? >> i don't know because i haven't talked to the attorney general and those closest to him are not saying but there are bigger questions for the attorney general. including whether or not there should be a special counsel appointed to look into what happened in this action of insurrection. in this attack on the united states. in this act of civil war that extends to the president himself. we need a real investigation of this and if the republicans were to win the house of representatives, their intent in a year from now, their intent is to shut down this investigation that is led by jamie raskin and others and by liz cheney. so we need to find out what happened and something in our history that if left to stand,
you know, we have general milley and general raskin just used the word, fascism. it's a really ugly word and it's been thrown around recklessly by the left in the 1950s and '60s too much. but it's general milley, most important military man in america. chairman of the joint chiefs, who a number of weeks ago started saying outloud that what we saw on january 6th was hitlerian. what we saw were brown shirts for the mob that attacked the capitol. we noeed to look at all these elements at what is happening in our country in the name of trumpism and the movement and a republican party that is willing and 40, 45% of voters in america willing to go along with the outrages that are comparable to the successionist movement that
jefferson davis led 160 years ago. but he was not the president of the united states. >> and the vice president this time around is not mike pence, but it does boggle the mind. thanks for that excellent analysis. we appreciate it. >> good to be with you. coming up, a new interview reveals the armor on the set of alec baldwin's film expressing doubts about her relative lack of experience just one month before tragedy would strike. of your financing. at carvana, get personalized terms, browse for cars that fit your budget, then customize your down payment and monthly payment. and these aren't made-up numbers. it's what you'll really pay, right down to the penny. whether you're shopping or just looking. it only takes a few seconds, and it won't affect your credit score. finally! a totally different way to finance your ride. only from carvana. the new way to buy a car. listerine® cleans virtually 100%.
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about the tragic movie set shooting with alec baldwin. he fired what he believed to be a safe prop gun not knowing there were live rounds inside. it killed halyna hutchins and injured joe souza. >> location of emergency? >> creek ridge, two people accidentally shot on a movie set by prop gun. >> was it loaded with a real bullet? >> i cannot tell you that. we have two injuries from a movie gun shot. >> okay. we're getting them out there already. >> cnn's lucy kavanagh is in new mexico with the latest. what else are we learning in this investigation? >> well, the affidavit has new details about how the weapon ended up in baldwin's hands.
we understand the team was inside of a structure of the film set, rust, trying to practice, trying to film for this movie. outside of the struck whiture, head armor, the person in charge of safety, had placed three weapons on a cart. we understand the affidavit names her as hannah gutierrez. we know from the affidavit that the assistant director picked up where one of the prop guns, shouting cold gun, which meant that weapon should not have had any live rounds inside it. we know what happened afterwards. it's not clear where the head armor was during this incident. hannah gutierrez is 24 years old. she was trained by her father. the legendary gun smith vel reid. starting training her when she was 16 years old. she graduated college a year ago and this was her second time working as head armor. she worked on another film, the
old way, with nicolas cage, and gave an interview about this experience in a podcast that aired in september in which she cared concerns about her ability to do the job. take a listen. >> i was really nervous about it at first and i almost didn't take the job because i wasn't sure if i was ready but doing it, like, it went really smoothly. >> she also mentioned, the scariest experience ever. she didn't know how to do it. she had to get help from her dad in figuring that out. it doesn't indicate what happened on the set of rust, but it is worrying. >> the "l.a. times" is reporting that several crew members had safety concerns before the shooting. what can you tell us about that? >> yeah. several concerns. prior to thursday's incident, crew members, at least a few, reportedly quit the production over these safety concerns. some were about things like long hours, difficult working conditions, lax covid safety
protocols, but some were also about gun safety measures. now this was a low budget film, we understand. crew members were upset with the long hours, the fact they had to stay in albuquerque and drive 50 minutes each way. several sources told t"the los angeles times" they were concerned that safety protocols for the weapon were not strictly followed. in fact, three crew members who were onset saturday told the "l.a. times" there were two accidental prop gun discharges. this was last saturday before this incident took place. obviously, authorities are investigating everything. we've been told by the sheriffs they're combing but the property as we speak. they don't expect to update the public before monday. >> thanks very much for that update. coming up, you're looking at live pictures now from new jersey. former president barack obama is bringing his star power back to the campaign trial. will that be enough to boost two
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races in new jersey and in virginia where he was on stage this afternoon alongside democratic candidate terry mcauliffe. he accused republicans of trying to rig elections and he had this reason for why they would do that. >> if you've got good ideas, people will flock to your ideas, but that's not what they try to do. instead, you're trying to rig elections. because the truth is, people disagree with your ideas. and when that doesn't work, you start fabricating lies and conspiracy theories about the last election. the one you didn't win. that's not how democracy's supposed to work. >> cnn's athena jones is here with us now from newark where obama's expected to speak at any moment. athena, if the virginia rally was any indication, i think you're going to hear some lines you may recall as a former obama reporter yourself, what can you tell us about what we should
expect? >> hi, jim. this is something that president obama relishes, being out on the campaign trial and we know that the governor's race in new jersey and virginia are the only two elections ahead of the midterms and they're seen as what democrats might face in 2022. this event is meant to mark the start of early voting. this is the first time in history that new jersey voters are able to go to the polls early. it starts today. ends on october 31st. early voting has been incredibly popular among democrats. they're hoping to encourage everyone here who hasn't already voted to go and vote early in person and the idea is to bank as many voetes as you can. we are in essex county. the county with the most democratic voters. in fact, democrats outnumber republicans here by 5-1. they're really trying to rev up this crowd. this is a diverse crowd. newark is a diverse city. 50% black.
30% hispanic. murphy did well among blacks and hispanics. that's why president obama is here to try to rev up this crowd. i did speak to someone familiar with his plan and what his message will be today. he said having folks like phil murphy to be elected, this is the only way to make progress on big issues of concern to democrats. things like voting rights. things like economic inequality. fixing economic inequality. racial justice. climate change. so he's going to make the case that murphy's record means he deserves to be re-elected. at one point, we heard from several other speakers today, phil murphy, if he wins, will be the first democrat to win re-election since the '70s. in about 40 years. so it's a big deal, but this is what we're hearing. get out and vote. people have been able to get out and vote by mail early, but in-person voting is new here in
new jersey so the whole idea and goal of this event is to drive people to the polls before the election a little over a week from now. jim. >> and there are going to be such important elections. such a bellwether for what we're going to be expecting to see in 2022. and democrats are pulling out. this is the biggest gun that they can pull out in the final days of this. barack obama. all right, thank you so much. we appreciate it. nice to see you. >> coming up, what some people inside facebook were saying about the company's culpability leading up to the january 6 attack. plus, lisa ling exposes the good and bad of legalized sex work. watch tomorrow night at 10:00 on cnn. powerful suction locks away debris. spray mopping tackles tough messes. all with one innovative disposable pad you never have to touch. shark vacmop, for when happy gets messy.
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just days after violent insurrectionists storms the capitol on january 6th, facebook down played its role in what happened, but now, internal documents revealed by cnn reveal how the company -- and only swung into action after the movement turned violent. >> on january 6th, facebook executives condemned the attack on the u.s. capitol, but internally, some employees began to push back. one writing in a chat, all due respect, but haven't we had
enough time to figure out how to manage discourse without enabling violence? we've been fuelling this fire for a long time and we shouldn't be surprised it's now out of control. another wrote they were tired of thoughts and prayers from facebook leadership. >> stop the steal! stop the steal! >> the conspiracy theory movement had been organizing on facebook for months. >> how did you guys hear about this event today? >> through facebook. >> facebook events, instagram. how have you been creating this? >> i created a facebook event for yesterday's event and i posted after the fact that we were again coming today. i will be again making another event in regards to tomorrow. >> facebook provided the fundamental coordinating infrastructure. they were sharing ride share information. sharing resources. they were talking about, you know, what they were going to
wear. >> we know wear trump flags. >> frances spent her final months photographing thousands of internal documents and company chat logs. >> these documents are vindication that what we've been seeing has been true all along and facebook knows it and could take action on it and decide not to. >> for many years, people have been talking about the facebook effect. we didn't know from data from facebook whether these theories were truchlt what frances has given us is an extraordinary archive of material that helps us see exactly what's going on and what they know is going on,
and it is the biggest and most important contribution to understanding this incredibly important problem that we've ever had. >> reporter: the leaked documents, many just becoming public, were given to a consortium including cnn where she says they misled people with information. >> facebook executives like nick clegg will say it's unfair to blame facebook for the insurrection. >> it's a red herring to say people are blaming facebook for the entire thing. that's not what's happening here. you can't at the same time be facebook and take responsibility and being very proud of all the organizing work that you've helped black lives matter do or occupy movement or standing
rock. you can't take credit for all of that and then say, oh, that thing called the insurrection, we had nothing to do with it. >> reporter: another revelation, internal memos including a staffer setting up a test account to see what the algorithms were putting out to users. they set up an account designed to look like a 41-year-old conservative mom living in north carolina. her name is carol smith. she likes a few pages, she likes trump, she likes fox news, but in a week she's getting a qanon recommendation. i saw in there after three weeks there was a recommendation for a page that was the three percenters, the militia -- self-described militia involved in the insurrection. >> yeah. no. i believe, again, we've suspected this dynamic. what's striking and what frances
revealed is we now know facebook itself saw these precisely. so these are like potato chips they feed to somebody who's got a potato chip addiction, and that is the reality of the platform. it is an addiction engine, and it profits the more it can manipulate us with more we can consume. >> our thanks to donie for that report. this year marks the 15th anniversary of cnn heroes, and we're checking in with many of our past honorees who continue to make a difference. one was recognized for courageously educating native girls in afghanistan. now her life's work is at risk. cnn's anderson cooper takes a look. >> which country would fall in 11 days.
it took 20 years for women to stand and be recognized, and to see that it, it was awful. >> reporter: under the taliban's all-male government, women have already lost ground. while they're still permitted at some universities and segregated classes, girls can not attend secondary schools until so-called security rules are evolved. young girls are still in school for now. she said she's determined to build on that. >> i can't tell you how wonderful it is to see these girls in the courtyard playing and also in the classroom and trying to learn. it's just amazing. i have great support in the community, and the girls, they want to learn. that gives me hope. maybe it won't be the same, but we can do something to educate
these girls because i'm not going to give in. >> next friday we'll be announcing this year's top ten cnn heroes on "new day" at 8:00 a.m. eastern. find out more on cnnheroes.com. that's the news. i'm jim acosta. see you back here tomorrow at 4:00 p.m. pamela brown takes over live after a quick break.
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washington. you are in the "cnn newsroom." hoping to go straight to newark, new jersey. that's where former president barack obama just took the stage to stump for the governor there, phil murphy. let's listen. >> i've known phil for a long time. he was an early supporter of mine. back when people could not pronounce my name. you know, that's my test. you know, a lot of people started coming on board once, and it was all right. but back in the day, you know, having those early folks, that meant a lot. so phil and tammy, they've been good friends to me and michelle for a long