tv New Day With John Berman and Brianna Keilar CNN January 13, 2022 4:00am-5:00am PST
yankees low-class affiliate, tampa tarpons when the season begins. the first female manager in modern baseball league history. despite the progress made, balkovec is aware how have reacted to her barrier-breaking journey. >> i don't understand the negativity. like, if you know my story, and you have a pulse, i think it's pretty hard not to get behind what's going on here, and i just, you know, if you know yourself and you know where you came from, i just -- it doesn't really matter. so that's -- i just -- that's how i deal with the negativity or anything i hear coming my way. it's hey ilarious to me because it's the american dream. >> ten years ago struggling to get a job in baseball her sister suggested she change her name from rachel to ray on her resume. did that, actually got calls but changed her name back to rachel realizing she didn't want to work for someone who didn't want to hire women and great to see progress made.
11 women in uniform working in baseball this upcoming season. >> seems awesome. i love her attitude and wish her best of luck, except -- when she plays the red sox. andy scholes, thank you very much. "new day" continues, right now. welcome to viewers in the united states and all around the world. it is thursday, january 13th. i'm john berman with brianna keilar, and this morning the top republican in the house is joining the growing number of trump loyalists defying the january 6th select committee. the panel says it wants inferring from house minority leader kevin mccarthy, but he is refusing to cooperate claiming the investigation is illegitimate. he calls it an abuse of power. now, you can bet the committee knew what mccarthy would say. you can bet they didn't really expect him to show up, but the
real news might be not in what they're asking of mccarthy, but what they're telling him, and what they're telling us about what they have in this investigation and where they're going. in this letter to mccarthy, chairman bennie thompson cites and interview mccarthy gave with cbs news during the insurrection demanding he tell rioters to stop. >> in a cnn exclusive, liz cheney, vice chairwoman of the january 6th committee does not rule out subpoenaing mccarthy. she suggests mckarnlg s mccarth to hide something. >> we know leader mccarthy was pleading with the president to tell people to go home when police officers and others were being beaten here at the capitol. so i thwish he were a brave and honorable man. clearly trying to cover up what happened. he has an obligation to come
forward and we'll get to the truth. >> now, after the capitol riot, mccarthy unequivocally blamed trump. as lauren fox reports, the flip-flopping soon followed. >> would you be willing to testify about your conversation with donald trump on january 6th, if you were asked by an outside commission. >> sure. next question. >> you would? >> reporter: cnn previously reported that this resulted in a house issing match insisting the rioters were trump supporters breaking into his office through the windows. according to sources briefed on the call by mccarthy himself, trump said, women, kevin, i guess these people are more upset about the election than you are. mccarthy yelled back, who the f do you think you're talking to? >> the president bears responsibility for wednesday's
attack on the capitol by mob r rioters. >> reporter: but a week later. >> i don't believe he provoked it. listen to what he said at the rally. >> reporter: in january he traveled to mar-a-lago to visit the former president and since then has downplayed his phone conversation with trump. >> my conversations with the president are my conversations with the president. >> reporter: representative lis cheney, recently stripped of her leadership position for speaking out against trump believes mccarthy should testify. >> leader mccarthy has spoken to a number of people in large groups and small groups since the 6th about his exchanges with the president. he's spoken publicly on the house floor about his view of the president's responsibility. i think it's very important he clearly has facts about that day that an investigation into what happened, into the president's actions ought to get to the bottom of, and i think he has important information that needs to be part of any investigation.
>> what other accomplishes to talk about a conversation on january 6th? did that raise issues of president trump's responsibility for the riot? whether or not he's trying to tamper with kevin mccarthy as a witness? >> certainly. i mean, i think that, you know, any conversations, and we know certainly that that conversation happened, just a fe-- >> reporter: a few weeks earlier asked by chris wallace about witness tampering. >> has the president ever reached out to you, since that report came out, to discuss what you and he talked about in the january 6th phone call and did you say to him, i can't, because we're under oath? >> no. >> that never happened? >> it never happened. never even close. >> and if it did happen you would agree that would be witness tampering. >> yeah. but it never happened. never came close. never had any conversation like that. >> okay. >> never even heard that rumor until today. >> reporter: lauren fox, cnn, on capitol hill.
joining us now, cnn political commentatcommentator, house communications director to president trump. resigned in december of 2020. she has also spoken with republican members of the january 6th committee voluntarily. i submit the news here isn't that kevin mccarthy is refusing to go talk to them. i think that was a given. even though he claimed before he would show up and talk to them. i do think with news in this document, it's that it tells us everything about where the committee is going and what they have. they're really, really honing in on the 187 minutes about what trump was doing during the insurrection here. what can you tell us about your experience with the committee that provides insight into that? >> yes. i've said from the outset the committee's taking a very deliberative process how they go about this. they don't even go after kind of the top tier recruits, if you will, they would bring in like a
kevin mccarthy until backfilling all the information needed from talking to other staff. i think some of the people who have gone in have been actually surprised by how much information the committee in fact has. one thing i want to note. with kevin mccarthy, everything he does from now until this time next year is about getting his speakership and trying to get donald trump support for his speakership. this should come as no surprise to any of us. the thing he wants least in the world an article on donald trump's desk in mar-a-lago saying, kevin mccarthy cooperating with the january 6th committee. i was watching for, kevin mccarthy's response was a little ambiguous. i thought he may in some capacity maybe turn over some documents. i wouldn't be surprised just for legacy and history's sake he wants to show, whoa, whoa, i had nothing to do with this but i don't anticipate any level of cooperation or, like, sitting down with the committee unless compelled. >> trump must look at what's in
this letter, you know, information about what mccarthy was warning him about and so on and not be happy about that either, but it's worth noting, this is a pretzel of kevin mccarthy's own making. right? he could have had republicans on this committee who were friendly to him? >> correct. he should have sat republican members that could have at least given him insight what the committee is finding, but the thing is, kevin mccarthy knows the conversations he had that day. i anticipate based and what you just showed and what we remember, he was horrified after january 6th. i don't think you're going to find any wrongdoing by kevin mccarthy. his refusal to comply is purely about protecting donald trump and thesecond thing protecting goal of being speaker of the house. >> this letter, i'm fascinated by, includes several footnotes that say, documents on file with the select committee. which is to say to mccarthy and the world, we got stuff here.
we have the receipts here. we know what's going on. one other curious thing, if you look at this letter. it really, seems to hint of the possibility of some kind of deliberate cover-up. you heard it there in lauren fox's piece. the letter says public statements regarding january 6th changed markedly since you met with trump at that meeting or any other time did president trump or his representatives discuss or suggest what you should say publicly during the impeachment trial or in any later investigation about your conversations with him on january 6th? the committee's asking, throwing that out there, about witness tampering and you hear liz cheney talking about a cover-up? >> maybe not a direct conversation with the former president. be clear. donald trump has been out there very, very clear that he thinks people should not cooperate, the committee's a sham, a
witch-hunt. what may be kind of indirect witness tampering statements going out from the former president basically making clear he wants no one to cooperate. i think that's most likely what kevin mccarthy is seeing. he knows if he were to speak to the committee it would hurt him tr tremendously in his standing with the former president. i wouldn't be surprised if he ends um turning over information. some documents. he cares about legacy. when the book is written january 6th, the reports, he will want it to show he tried to do the right thing. tried to get the national guard there. may be a level of cooperation there at some point certainly not voluntarily and not publicly. >> what do you make of kayleigh mcenany, former press secretary speaking to the committee. did this yesterday virtually after subpoenaed. not taking the route of defying the subpoena. what do you think the committee would want to know from her and why do you think she made that
decision to comply? >> well, two things. kayleigh is a lawyer. a smart person. i think she realizes there's quite a bit of legal exposure that comes with defying a congressional subpoena, but also i imagine that fox news expected her to go in. i wouldn't imagine that they would be in favor one of their hosts defying a congressional subpoena. i would say this. i think the conversations they'd want to have the with her what did you observe that day? spend a lot of time with donald trump. she was in and out of the oval constantly. what recommendations was show bringing to the president? why didn't she use her platform, had millions of followers, to ask folks to stand down? i don't think, i don't have any reason to believe she herself was involved in any of the planning beforehand other than spreading the big lie. she'll be helpful in kind of painting the picture of what donald trump was doing that day, what led to the remarks written that he delivered outside of the white house. it's a good thing she's cooperating.
>> yeah. interesting note. she did not resign in response to january 6th. kind of ghosted there end of the administration working from home in florida but did not resign. alyssa, thank you so much. >> thanks. novak djokovic is now officially the number one seed in the australian open men's singles draw, but he is still waiting for immigration officials to decide on his visa, which has been granted, then rev revoked, granted and may be revoked yet again over issues with his travel forms and covid testing timeline. talk about this now with a former espn anchor and is host of the podcast "naked" it is great to see you this morning. i mean, this is the story that just keeps on giving. i wonder what you think now of where we are as this has unfolded at this point? >> apropos. it continues to give. trying to write about this, but i start then i stop because it
has a in twist and turn. where we are today. i have changed a bit in my stance, because it now is very clear someone from novak's camp is not telling the truth. whether him, his party. whomever. very clear not the truth there that we can see and now are looking at the end result. for just a moment people were on his side in australia. thinking, unfair. in detention center. all that may be true but something not clear here in terms of timing and you know you had covid, went outside and interviewed with someone, and that's not necessarily fair. hearing the journalist didn't know novak had covid. here we are with all of these moral decisions to make. i've said this before. we are learning in realtime how to adjust to covid. but i would think that he would want to, perhaps, either leave, because i don't see the benefit in staying if you win the australian open.
doesn't seem like people in that country are for you. this is forever going to change the impact of tennis and what it looks like for the australian open. >> i also have been dying to ask you this question after seeing someone say this on twitter. they said, someone posting yesterday, imagine if venus williams acted like novak djokovic. okay. consider that. imagine that? what would that look like? what would the response be? >> oh, first of all, i mean, she would never. serena would never. naomi would never. i'm not saying that novak is pushing his elite privilege in everyone's face, but what i am saying is that the tennis world even the authorities would respond differently. today the french open, the very same french open that said, naomi had to go to press, rules in place and we're maintaining rules simply said, yes, an unvaccinated novak djokovic can come here, be here and play allow him to play the french
open. definitely a double set of standards. we've seen that with tennis over the years and i truly trfind it- put that way, absurd. outlashed, off with her, xooem for being so vocal with his. off with her head, she's done something horrible if serena or naomi osaka. quite a different story and answers we're still looking for whether or not he can play, i'm sure would have been provided long ago had it been those three other ladies. >> yeah. look, we're going to keep talking about this, because we're waiting to hear from the immigration minister in aust australia. we know someone on djokovic's team, he or someone else on the team lying about his travel on the entry application. a lot to happen here. >> exactly. >> cari, thanks for being with us this morning, of course, brianna. thank you. senator lindsey graham saying that he won't back mitch
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officials in some east coast cities saying omicron covid surge seems to be slowing and may have actually even peaked. in boston you can see new cases finally starting to dip there. in washington, d.c., which has seen a huge surge, now also trending downward, and then cases in new york city has begun
to plateau. governor kathy hochul says while cases are increasing elsewhere in the state this change could be a "bglimmer of hope". the fact the decline may have started in places hit first and hardest is significant. so also this morning, when the fda authorized the first oral anti-viral covid treatment last month it was welcomed as a game changer. that drug and others, they're scarce. forcing doctors to decide who gets treatment and who doesn't. cnn's chief medical correspondent dr. sanjay gupta investigates. >> i could feel like the mucus build up in my lungs. >> reporter: like millions of other american, 26-year-old clay byington tested positive for covid-19 after gathering with friends and family over the holidays. >> when the coughs came definitely sent the aches down the body. >> reporter: were you quite worried about how sick you were getting? >> i was pretty worried. i -- i see a lot of stories about how people's health has
declined very fast. you know, in a matter of days. i know me being overweight just kind of worried me. >> reporter: despite being boosted, clay's bmi of 35 placed him at higher risk. so clay's doctor prescribed his pla paxlovid helping those with highest risk. >> game changer dramatically alter impact of covid-19. >> reporter: it's a combination of oral pills that work by interfering with the virus' ability to replicate. based on its high efficacy, the 20 million courses bought by the biden administration could eventually prevent more than a million hospitalizations, based on cnn's calculations. but the problem is this -- the majority of those doses won't arrive for months. >> hardly any of these pill
packs around. >> reporter: dr. eric topol vice president of research at scrips in san diego and believes the biden administration should have invested in these months ago. >> had we had hundreds of millions of blister packs we'd be so much better to defend against omicron. >> reporter: several months before authorized there were at-risk investments made, bets made on various vaccines, and those are gambles. were those same sorts of gambles made on therapeutics? >> the fact this was the first medication that was designed specifically against this virus, that i think was worth a shot. it was worth an investment, but there was not. >> reporter: so far just 160,000 courses delivered around the country, waned more people currently hospitalized with covid-19 than at any other time during the pandemic, these pills
will soon be in short supply. they will need to be rationed. >> challenging. >> reporter: leaving doctors like this at harvard's medical center with some tough decisions. >> we're using these medications judiciously and really giving them to the people that would most benefit from these therapeutics. if we open it up to vaccinated individuals, we would not have enough therapy. >> reporter: should a vaccinated person get it versus an unvaccinated? only for unvaccinated? raising all kinds of ethical and medical sort of questions? >> the availability is so limited and more people who are unvaccinated are going to wind up in need. >> reporter: the national institutes of health guidance prioritizes treatment for those at highest risk. the immunocompromised, elderly, and, yes, the unvaccinated. >> many of the people seeking this therapy may not need this therapy to recover from covid-19
and particularly if vaccinated boosted. >> reporter: there are other treatments available. but remdesivir and anti-viral and others require infusions, and mon kupiravir, none as effective as paxlovid. >> yesterday my cold wasn't as worse and today i'm feeling a lot better. >> reporter: clay was one of the lucky few getting both physical relief as well a mental relief from the drug. >> once you're sick and you're, you know, you're feeling the symptoms and kind of like, oh, my goodness. is this going to get worse? so that kind of, the medication helped alleviate that stress and anxiety. >> reporter: now, it can be a very effective medication. again, keeping people from developing severe symptoms. the white house has addressed this shortage of these medications saying, look, they
were working with pfizer last year. trying to accelerate the clinical trials and cut through the red tape. but here we are. i mean, millions of pills will arrive by summer. but we're in the middle of a surge now and instead we have about 160,000 of these treatments. so that's the shortfall. >> where are the other doses, the other courses of this drug, if 10 million have been requested? >> reporter: well, they just take a while to manufacture. i mean, this is a complicated drug. the complicated active ingredients. so six to nine months to potentially manufacture and gets at the issue at what point in the middle of a pandemic to you make these at-risk ip innvestme? long discussions during "operation warp speed" investing in several different vaccines and didn't know which were likely to be found effective. that's those at-risk investments. pfizer therapeutic, merck, roche
therapeutic. not the same sort of investments made in those early on. people may say, we didn't know if they were going to work or not. that's a big discussion topic, but the final sort of thing is that we just don't have the enough right now. nair going to come by june, they say 10 million more pills, another 10 million after that by september. >> not just paxlovid in short supply, sanjay, right? >> reporter: no. the anti-viral, merck, also likely in short supply. also the monoclonal antibodies. trovomab, also in short fsupply. i think real lessons learned here in terms of how those decisions are made months in advance to sort of anticipate what's happening now. >> sanjay, we heard both dr. fauci and the acting fda
commissioner this week saying that nearly everyone is going to encounter the omicron variant. are you discouraged by that? what do you make of this change in tone? >> reporter: well i think we've been hearing some version of this for some time. remember, the w.h.o. european chief, when omicron started really surging said, within six to eight weeks they anticipated that, you know, half of european citizens would likely be exposed to this just within six to eight weeks. it's not that surprising. also look at numbers in terms of confirmed cases in the united states, any given day, that's a significant underestimate. because we're still not testing enough, and a lot of people are doing at-home tests and those aren't reported. instead of three quarters of a million, probably closer to 2 million, maybe, people getting infected every day. i'm not discouraged by that. i think that the question really is not how many people ultimately will get exposeds but
how rapidly the population will be exposed. that's always been the discussion. even from the earliest days of the pandemic. it's term "flatten the curve" came from. volume under the curve is roughly the same. a question of flattening. not everyone is exposes at the same time. >> dr. sanjay gupta, thank you, as always. >> reporter: you got it, thank you. this morning, unanswered questions in bob saget's sudden death. the latest from the family. and did joe biden take it too far in his fiery voting rights speech? former senator al franken will join us next with his reaction to some of the criticism. ough if you're in here! shh! i took mucinex dm for my phlegmy cough. what about rob's dry cough? works on that too, and lasts 12 hours. 12 hours?! who studies that long? mucinex dm relieves wet and dry coughs. ♪ ♪ wow, we're crunching tons of polygons here! what's going on? where's regina? hi, i'm ladonna.
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and comedian. saget's family is also still awaiting autopsy results. cnn's reporter is live in miami with more on this. so many questions. so much sadness around his death, chloe. >> reporter: good morning, brianna. also a lot of speculation. a lot of people connecting the fact that bob saget hallelujah covid and recovered from it, and some claiming perhaps it was his booster or vaccine, or something that led to his death. we know that the family, i spoke to multiple people close to bob yesterday, who said they are just waiting for this autopsy report, that will not be back for weeks. in the meantime, they don't want to speculate. he would not have gone on tour, taken the stage, if he was not feeling healthy. that he was healthy, in good spirits, and that's why he decided to perform in florida. that he had no underlying health
conditions that anybody was concerned about, and bob actually spoke about having covid in a podcast just a few days before his death. take a listen. >> it is not good. it does not feel good. i had it, and -- >> yeah. it's not good. >> i don't know if i had delta or -- i might have had a combo. maybe at one point they were working together. i don't know. i think at one point omicron was opening for delta, but then omicron got so big, delta's opening now over omicron. >> reporter: always had a sense of humor. obviously, covid is no joke and talks about the fact it was a difficult time, and we know from sources close to bob, brianna, he had covid in december. there's been a lot of questions about the timeline of when he had it. but he talked about having had his booster, having been vaccinated, but, again. family members close to bob and people who worked with him say we don't want to speculate about
what caused his death, that he was in good health, and they will have the answers, we will all have those answers in just a matter of weeks. >> all right. we'll be staying tuned for that. chloe, thank you. >> reporter: thank you. joining me now, former senator and host of the al franken podcast, al franken. senator, nice to see you this morning and, of course, you have a foot in the political world and a foot in the comedy world still. >> yes. >> you've got a bob saget story? >> well, you know, i've known bob for years. at comedy world, it's fairly small. lovely, lovely guy. i saw him just a few months ago, not long after norm macdonald died. i was at the family cellar in gran it g g greenwich village. bob wanted to talk about norm. that's what he did.
close friends. very good friends. bob, lovely guy. you hear it from all the people who worked with him. when you do a show, you know, like he did, that lasted for years. everybody becomes the family and you know each other very well. and from what i'm hearing from everybody, they just loved bob, and that -- you just heard him talking the way he used omicron, opening for -- for delta. he was really funny, and, of course, one of the stories that you may have heard is that he became friends with my parents. my parents and i bought a place in st. thomas, and my parents, would, you know, spend a lot of the winter down there and met bob and became friends, and totally different generationally, but he really loved my parents and they loved
him. >> my wife asked this question to me. the way people are talking about bob saget, it's just different than i really almost ever heard about anyone else. people loved hill. there was something about the way that he interacted or treated people that made them love him. what can we learn? how can i treat people the way that bob saget did? >> i think you do. >> that's kind. seriously what do we do? >> no. i mean, there's a lot -- yeah. he was good to people. he was good to the people he worked with. he was a nice guy, but there are a lot of people like that, and you know, i think -- i meet them all the time and i meet them in all walks of life, and, but he was just a good guy. and -- and really funny, and also had this unbelievable dich dichotomy, which, of course, in his tv show he played america's
dad, and then he was one of the filthiest comics on tour. >> let me ask you, he liked mom and dad to boost. changing gears here. you say everyone's like that. i'm not sure everyone's like that in the u.s. senate. >> not everyone, but a lot of people. >> talk about senator lindsey graham, your former colleague from the state of south carolina. listen, donald trump pick add fight with mitch mcconnell. really doesn't want mitch mcconnell to be the republican leader anymore. and last night it seemed that lindsey graham, he picked sides in this. listen. >> if you want to be a republican leader in the house or the senate, you have to have a working relationship with president donald trump. i like senator mcconnell. he worked well with president trump to get a bunch of judges including three supreme court justices on the bench that got the tax cuts passed working together, but here's the question -- can senator mcconnell effectively work with a leader
of the republican party donald trump? i'm not going to vote for anybody that can't have a working relationship with president trump. >> he's picking sides there, senator. >> is he saying not going to vote for mitch for lealeader? what it sounds like. that's kind of ridiculous insofar as donald trump's a horrible person, and -- i think -- pretty much everyone in the republican senate caucus kind of knows it, and he's been selling this huge lie. mike rounds of south dakota finally said, come on, everybody. we've got to stop saying this. chris christie has said that. a number of people said it. so i think -- this is too cynical ocynic al on lindsey's part. he knows the election was
stolened and i don't know why he's doing that, other than he maybe thinks it's good for lindsey. >> i do want to ask you about president biden's push for voting rights. he gave that speech in atlanta. some, he compared george wallace and jefferson davis, said do you want to be on the side of martin luther kirng or all of those people? dick durbin, former colleague, said maybe it went too far. listen. >> perhaps the president went a little too far in his rhetoric. some of us do. fundamental principles and values at stake are very, very similar. >> what do you think? >> i -- i agree with both men. i agree with the president and with dick. it was maybe a little over the top, but there's no question that what the republicans are trying to do is suppress votes, and can i give you just a number of examples?
>> a few. >> for example. okay. try real fast. texas. in texas they made a law you only get one drop box per county. there is 4.7 million texans in harris county. as for houston. they get one drop box. a count they has 200 people in it gets one drop box. well, who's in the county with 200 people? those are, tend to be, white, rural republican voters. who's in houston? that tends to be more minority voters. look, mcconnell voted for the voting rights act in 2006, and that included -- pre-clarirant. that's what this is. got rid of that after shelby county, what happened?
boom. in north carolina just wrote the lays a fourth circuit said targeted black with almost surgical precision. there is no question that the republican party is trying to tamp down, suppress the vote of people who vote for democrats. includin people, but students and poor people. it's pretty clear what they're doing, and for them to deny that is just intellectually dishonest, but that's who they are now. >> al franken, appreciate you being with us. thank you. >> you bet. former first lady melania trump selling some of her historic stuff. does anybody still wear a hat? the question is, why? and boris johnson facing questions over his boozie covid bash, which is totally fair, to face questions about that, but we'll tell you what isn't, next.
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a huge moment of crisis for british prime minister boris johnson facing withering questions about the propriety of hosting a garden party while the rest of his country was in lockdown. >> does the prime minister realize it's clear while he may not understand destined from others no doubt moderately different than the rest of us and basically can do more. >> not just about holding the party, facing questions, but his honesty surrounding it. >> can't the prime minister see why the british public think he's lying through his teeth? >> so it's a serious moment with serious implications that we have covered at length, but what
many americans noticed, it all came to a head with the prime minister there in the house of commons answering questions from members of parliament. >> what's so gothic about that response? it's that the prime minister feels no shame for his actions. >> a quaint tradition called the prime minister's answers. call it quaint because they still have princes and princesses. every wednesday the prime minister has to go toe to toe with mps and face the music. not that brits are known for their music. >> i want to repeat that i thought it was a work event. >> that apology was pretty worthless, wasn't it? >> regrettably i wish we had done things differently. >> this just isn't working prime minister. >> merely gone for a cup of tea. i think somebody going for an early cup of tea as well. >> the party's over, prime
minister. the only question is, will the british public kick him out or his party kick him out or will he do the decent thing and resign? >> it really is quite a spectacle. can all seem some american cable commentator rejoicing and how glorious the british system is. and it is great. especially if pompous is your thing. but it is important to note in the gushing adoration for british democracy, it is actually a monarchy. the prime minister takes questions, but you know who doesn't? the head of state. or anyone in the royal family. the dukes and earls and marquess, not that i know what a marques is. am i saying that right? i know that none there has a better career than marquis grissom. i digress. questions are great. and prime minister boris johnson has a lot to answer for. but i can think of some others who do as well.
such a good point. it is such a good point. and i will say, spoken like a true son of massachusetts. >> you know, you can understand my accent. some of the ones there not so sure. >> i do enjoy a question time. but it is a very good point you make, the protection, right now, especially, so current, of what is happening when it comes to questions about prince andrew and, i mean, i would love to hear those answered. >> there are conventions about what you can and can't ask the royal family in public. there are rules about it. just saying. >> if you refuse to be in public, you especially can't be answering questions. kevin mccarthy is stiff arming the january 6th committee. could he get slapped with a subpoena? and former first lady melania trump cleaning house and cashing in. >> she was an enigma in the white house. so she's selling bits of herself from really unhappy time in her life.
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happening now, bidding, active, for personal items belonging to former first lady melania trump. the minimum bid, $250,000. cnn's kate ben itnett joins us . some first ladies sold stuff for charity before. is that what's happening here? >> it is interesting. there is a smart part on melania trump's website where she's announcing the sale of a hat and another nft and it says a portion of the proceeds are going to help foster children but we asked many times which portion and which foster children and define the breakdown, we have never gotten an answer. what is clear, this is a former first lady who will profit personally from items she is selling that happened during her tenure as first lady and that money will go straight into melania trump's pocket. a year out of the white house
and melania trump is stirring controversy. >> my fellow americans, it has been the greatest honor of my life to serve as first lady of the united states. >> reporter: an honor that apparently has a price tag. melania trump announcing she is auctioning off her white hat, the wide-brimmed number she wore for first state visit during the trump administration back in april of 2018. the hat made headlines, and now melania is attempting to cash in. autographing it and putting it up for auction to her fans along with a water color of her wearing the hat and a non-fungible token or nft, a piece of digital artwork or collectible, all for sale via cryptocurrency, opening bid, $250,000. a money play unheard of for a first lady. >> for michelle obama to laura bush, nobody has sold any gowns that they have worn, nobody has sold pieces of their time in the white house because there is
this sense that it belongs to the american people. >> reporter: most former first ladies catalog important items of clothing and donate them, either to a presidential library or to a museum. something melania did in 2017, with her inauguration gown, designed by her stylist erve pierre, giving it to the first ladies exhibit. pierre, incidentally, also the designer of the white hat. there have been auctions of former first lady items, but those have taken place after they have died. most notably the auction of jacqueline kennedy's possessions in 1996, two years after her death. and three decades after her time in the white house. arguably one of the most popular first ladies in american history renowned for her style, the auction made the kennedy estate millions of dollars. but melania trump is very much alive, living in palm beach, not doing public events, and as of last month dabbling in the world
of bitcoin, selling digital drawings of her eyes and now this. >> for her, it always has been about image, and she was an enigma in the white house, and so she's selling bits of herself from a really unhappy time in her life. >> reporter: perhaps the most confounding part of the sale is the personal profit melania trump is hoping to make, while a small paragraph at the bottom of her website notes a portion of the proceeds will go to help foster children, numerous attempts by cnn to get clarity from trump's spokesperson on how large or small a portion and to forever. >> reporter: but her fashion moments, with the right bidder, might not stick around that long. now, this auction is set to close on january 25th.
so if people want to bid on these items, they can. i want to say, john, former first ladies have made profit. they have written memoirs, do speaking engagements. but writing about their time in the white house is something for every american to read and share and opt in. it is a slightly different thing here that melania trump is doing by signing a piece of clothing and putting it up for sale for one person. >> kate bennett, thank you very much. "new day" continues right now. good morning to viewers here in the united states and around the world. it is thursday, january 13th. i'm brianna keilar with john berman. this morning, the top republican in the house could be facing a subpoena after joining a growing list of trump's loyalists who are defying the january 6th committee. the panel wants to speak to house minority leader kevin