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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Speaker Ryan "Not Ready" to Support Trump; Trump Fires Back, Not Ready to Support Ryan's Agenda; Officials: FBI Nearing End of Clinton Email Investigation; Trump Holds First Rally As Presumptive Nominee. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired May 5, 2016 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[19:00:10] ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: OUTFRONT next, breaking news. The Speaker of the House tells CNN he is not ready to back Donald Trump. Will he ever be? Major breaking news tonight. And we're awaiting live reaction from Donald Trump this hour.
Plus, Donald Trump's son, live in studio with me on Paul Ryan, the VP search and his father's Cinco de Mayo tweet.
And more breaking news. A major development in the FBI's investigation into Hillary Clinton's e-mail server. Let's go OUTFRONT.
Good evening. I'm Erin Burnett. OUTFRONT tonight, the breaking news. We are awaiting Donald Trump. He will speak live any moment. You will hear it, because this his first rally since becoming the presumptive Republican presidential nominee and also his first comments since the Speaker of the House Paul Ryan told CNN just within the past couple of hours that he is not ready to support Donald Trump.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAKE TAPPER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What you're saying is a fairly dramatic announcement that the Speaker of the House cannot as of now support his party's nominee for president. Is there something specific that he has done or said that has brought you to this moment?
REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Well, like I said, I hope to support our nominee. I hope to support his candidacy fully. And I want to do that. But right now, I've got to tell you, Jake, just being candid with you. At this point, I'm just not there right now. And it's because I think of -- part of the last campaign. I don't want to go back and roll the tape. Look, I was pretty clear and I was outspoken on a number of occasions where I think that he did the wrong thing or said the wrong thing. And I'll do that in the future if need be. I hope it's not necessary.
But I think what a lot of Republicans want to see is that we have a standard bearer that bears our standards and that unifies all of the wings of the Republican Party, which we all come from different wings of our party. But we all agree on a common platform of conservative principles. We want somebody who takes these conservative principles, applies them to the problems and offers solutions to the country that a vast majority of Americans can vote for, that they want to be enthusiastic about. That is what I think it takes to unify the party. That, I think there's work that needs to be done in order to unify the party. I think our presumptive nominee needs to do that. I want to be a part of helping him do that. But right now, no. I think that, you know, there's some work to do here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Pretty incredible statement there. And Donald Trump took a little time, everyone wondered what he would say, and then, well, he's about to speak in just a moment. And we're going to take you there, live. What he did, though, was put out a statement. A brief one. And here's what it said. "I am not ready to support Speaker Ryan's agenda. Perhaps in the future, we can work together and come to an agreement about what is best for the American people. They have been treated so badly for so long, that it is about time for politicians to put them first!"
Trump will be taking the stage at this rally in West Virginia as I said any moment. We're waiting to see what more might have to say to Paul Ryan.
Sara Murray begins our coverage OUTFRONT. She's at that Trump rally. And Sara, as they're awaiting Donald Trump to come out and comment on this, it's already something that you're hearing at this rally.
SARA MURRAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right. (INAUDIBLE) rallying the crowd by saying, our House Speaker Paul Ryan said he's never going to support Donald Trump. Saying these are just more politicians afraid of Donald Trump coming in to shake things up. The crowd went wild. Now, of course House Speaker Paul Ryan did not say he would never support Donald Trump. But to fire up the crowd. And look, I think Trump hoped to come to this rally tonight to sort of bask in the glory of becoming the presumptive Republican nominee and start trying out -- (INAUDIBLE), we see the Trump campaign try to ramp up on Capitol Hill. We're expecting Trump himself to be on the hill to meet with some folks. So it will be interesting to see if a meeting between Paul Ryan and Trump does come together. Back to you, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Sara Murray.
And when Donald Trump speaks there, we are going to listen to him. Because we do anticipate his response, speaking to Paul Ryan.
Let's go now to Dana Bash, she is OUTFRONT in Washington. And Dana, you know, this is -- this is an incredible moment, right?
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes.
BURNETT: The presumptive nominee of the Republican Party, and now in a standoff with the highest elected Republican in the United States of America. I mean, the stakes could not be higher. Paul Ryan did not do this lightly. He did not do this in passing. He thought about it, he considered it, he decided to come on CNN. What was his thinking?
BASH: Well, my understanding is, first of all, he did it because he followed his gut. That he genuinely wasn't prepared for this kind of development, meaning that Donald Trump would be the presumptive nominee. So soon. He was preparing for a contested convention, which as Speaker of the House, he would be and still will be the chair of that convention. And I am told that that was the first priority for him.
[19:05:16] But the other thing that I am told and reminded of is that he is all of those things. He is the leader of the Republican Party, the leader of the House Republicans. And he speaks for them, not just as a party, but also as a body that is looking to their own constituents. So this allows all of the members of the Republican rank and file inside the House to have some running room, to have some breathing room. To not feel obligated to endorse Donald Trump. And it gives them some space to do so. It really is absolutely -- I sort of run out of adjectives to describe some of the things that happened throughout this 2016 election cycle.
But seismic is the word I used earlier and I still think that is absolutely the case. Another source I will just quickly tell you said that what he wants to do is provide a light house through the fog for Republicans. And he does see himself as an absolute leader. And he's trying to be that way for the party right now, as they try to figure things out to give leverage to the people who are trying to do so.
BASH: Right. And, of course, this is a man who had and we presume still has on some level his own presidential ambitions. When we're talking about Paul Ryan. You just got off the phone with someone else who also, of course, was originally among the 17 running against Donald Trump or 16 running against Donald Trump, Rick Perry, former governor of Texas. And pretty incredible here. He was a very vocal Ted Cruz supporter. Ted Cruz now out of the race. What's Rick Perry saying?
BURNETT: And it also shows -- this shows the split within the Republican Party. Rick Perry just told me in a phone call from his home state in Texas that he does support Donald Trump. And he's going to do everything he can to help Donald Trump get elected. He said that he believes in the process, and the process meaning the voters inside the Republican electorate clearly said that Donald Trump should be the guy, and he is going to follow that process. And I will tell you that this conversation happened because I was calling him because Perry's name had been out there a lot, as a potential third party candidate. And his answer to me was no, that's quixotic. I don't want to do that. I believe that Donald Trump should be our guy.
And, of course, as you mentioned, I reminded him -- he didn't need reminding, really, that way back when, when Perry was running for president, he was one of the first -- I think he was the first to come out and criticize Donald Trump, as not being presidential, as not being conservative enough, and his response to me was, he's not a perfect man, but what I do believe, this is about -- Perry about Trump, is that he loves this country, and he will surround himself with capable, experienced people, and he will listen to them. And he underlined that point. That he will listen to them. And as I toss it back to you, I will tell you that I asked him if he would be interested in being Donald Trump's running mate. And he said I'm going to be open to any way I can help. I'm not going to say no -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Dana, thank you very much.
And OUTFRONT now, John King, he's national correspondent, host of "INSIDE POLITICS." Trump's spokesperson Katrina Pierson. Mark Preston, our executive editor of Politics. And John Avlon, editor-in- chief of "The Daily Beast."
John King, this is a major standoff. Paul Ryan as I said, highest ranking Republican in the United States, not ready to support Donald Trump. Coming out and saying it to the world. Trump, the presumptive nominee says, "OK, too bad."
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Erin, I'm dating myself a bit, I'm not trying to make live of this. But remember the old "Saturday Night Live" skit, candy mas macho? That's what we have -- that's what we have going on. Who is most macho? We have two leaders in the Republican Party right now. Donald Trump thinks he's the new leader of the Republican Party is planting a very important flag tonight, seismic as Dana said in saying, I'm still the highest elected Republican in the land. And the question is, Donald Trump clearly was upset that Paul Ryan were not got out ahead of Donald Trump here and said -- and Paul Ryan saying, I won't endorse you until I see if you're willing to accept our agenda.
Remember how hard, Erin. This is hard -- when you get caught up in the moment -- remember how hard not just Paul Ryan, but his team and on the Senate side, how hard these Republicans worked to get the majority early in the Obama presidency, to build their majority in the House, and then to get the majority in the Senate. And many of them think it's all at risk with Donald Trump atop the ticket. This is not just about personalities. They look at the Trump agenda. They look at how Trump communicates. And there's great value in that. Some conservatives love it if they're in safe districts. But other people where Republicans can lose races are very, very nervous and they're trying to see if Trump will come to them on the policy front.
BURNETT: So Mark Preston, what is this? The painful birth of a new third party that we're starting to see? Or Paul Ryan holding out hopes for his own presidential ambitions? Or what are we actually seeing happen here?
[19:10:03] MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Well, what we're seeing a lot of different things. Coming to play right now. But let's just -- piece this apart. The motivations. Did Paul Ryan do this because he himself is looking at 20/20? Perhaps. Okay?
PRESTON: But Paul Ryan has been around for a long time. He is a Jack Kemp disciple, now Jack Kemp is basically the true conservative that had the compassion. He is the one who talked about helping the poor. He's the one talking about cutting taxes. He is the one talking about going out to minority groups. This is basically the book that Paul Ryan reads every morning as he goes to work.
PRESTON: So I think that deep, down inside, look, Paul Ryan is looking out for himself down the road. But Paul Ryan is looking at himself through the eyes --
BURNETT: Right. But at the same time, that may be the case, but you also have Donald Trump again sort of ending around. It's not as if he's going against all those things. This is the guy who is now saying he wants to raise the minimum wage.
JOHN AVLON, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, "THE DAILY BEAST": Yes, look --
BURNETT: So you don't have this obvious, okay, he's turning against all, quote, "compassionate items." Just not all conservative items.
AVLON: But what you do have though is Paul Ryan is the opposite of Donald Trump in so many ways. He is a man of policy. He is a man of ideology, a man of philosophy. And a man who is fundamentally committed to governing, someone whose really spent his entire life, being part of the governing establishment. So in a place where Donald Trump is such inchoate collection of policy positions, that are united primary by the fact it happen to be held by Donald Trump.
AVLON: Until -- what Ryan said that was important is, can he unite the party as a process of uniting the nation around being elected? Because personally and politically, Donald Trump and Paul Ryan are on opposite ends of the spectrum.
BURNETT: I mean, it's incredible. And Katrina, you know, Speaker Ryan says, okay, I will back you, Donald Trump. If you do certain things. And kind of setting something up like that -- Donald Trump came out and said, no way. I'm not going to do it. But here's exactly how Paul Ryan put it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RYAN: I thought, actually, this thing was going to go to June 7 at the very least, probably to a convention. And so this is all pretty new for us. But at this point, I think that he needs to do more to unify this party, to bring all wings of the Republican Party together, and then to go forward and to appeal to all Americans and every walk of life, every background, a majority of Independents and discerning Democrats. And so, you know, I think conservatives want to know, does he share our values and our principles on limited government? The proper role of the executive. Adherence to the constitution. There are lots of questions that conservatives, I think, are going to want answers to, myself included.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: So why wouldn't Trump just -- wouldn't he go along with that agenda? Why would he put out and say, I'm not going to go along with that agenda? KATRINA PIERSON, DONALD TRUMP CAMPAIGN SPOKESWOMAN: Because Donald
Trump does not want to go along with an agenda where you spend a trillion dollars. You have the Republican establishment that high- fived each other for spending a trillion dollars. They talked about limited government. But the party has been limited government for a very long time. The party talks about --
BURNETT: Donald Trump is going to spend more money than anybody else.
PIERSON: The party talks about being constitutional but they haven't been constitutional for a very long time. The agenda that this Republican establishment is pushing is not what a lot of Republican Party voters don't want. I was there, Erin, when we tried to fight to get the House back. I was there when we fought to get the Senate back. And they made promise after promise after promise to do certain things and they did nothing. Not only that, they did worse. They capitulated to everything and fought for nothing. That's the problem.
BURNETT: Is this is something, though, that wins over people like Ted Cruz supporters? All of a sudden you've got the Republican establishment in Washington against --
AVLON: Yes, look. The credible card the Trump camp can play is the outsider versus insider card. That's totally legitimate. But it makes no sense to come and argue that Donald Trump stands for limited government and constitutional principles. The policies he has enacted or announced to date which are relatively few are not necessarily consistent with the constitution or limited government, let alone limited spending. You can't make that case. We're talking about a police state and building walls.
PIERSON: The problem we have here -- here's the problem we have here. We're not making the case for that. We're making the case --
AVLON: Those are the policies your guys backs.
PIERSON: -- that the people want something different. The people are tired of career politicians.
AVLON: That's fine. But it's not limited government.
PIERSON: The argument here is we have somebody like Paul Ryan, we have somebody John McCain and you have the Republican establishment saying Donald Trump is not conservative enough. Well, guess what? Bush number one raised taxes. He gave us the clean air act of 1990. Created NAFTA. That Bill Clinton signed. Bush number two, eviscerated the constitution with the Patriot Act. Grew government and education with no child left behind, he even further in health care with Medicare Part D. What does conservative mean?
AVLON: Look, look, the point you're making about specifics of the second Bush, interesting. Here's what's really significant. This nominee right now has to unite its party and the two living presidents who presided over this party and every living nominee are basically boycotting his nomination because they're concerned he is a divider, not a uniter and he has to prove otherwise. BURNETT: So, John King, who ends up winning? I know it's early to
say but when you look at this, you know, handicap it, Paul Ryan, Donald Trump?
KING: Paul Ryan does not support a third party, because Paul Ryan is raising money for Republicans. Paul Ryan wants to -- whether Donald Trump wins or loses, he wants to be there. If Donald Trump loses to pick up the pieces and try to move on to keep the House majority, to keep the Senate majority and maybe down the road to run for president. So, I think Paul Ryan was putting down a marker today and Donald Trump was offended that Paul Ryan didn't wait until they met before having this break, if you will.
[19:15:12] KING: Paul Ryan also made clear, he also made very clear, Erin, that he would like to support Trump, that he wants to support Trump and he is hoping that they can have a meeting, one set up for next week where Trump will come out and at least embrace most of the Ryan agenda. You know, the principles of the Ryan agenda. And that then they can say we agree to disagree on some other things.
BURNETT: And perhaps they'll get there. But a quick final word to you, Mark Preston, why would Paul Ryan do it ahead of their meeting?
PRESTON: Listen, I think that, you know, I don't know. Because I think that Paul Ryan wanted to be the one who is in charge of the discussion, right?
PRESTON: He wants to be the one OUTFRONT.
PRESTON: OUTFRONT. Yes. Play off words. But, you know, Erin, here's the thing. I think Donald Trump missed the opportunity today. Right? And the opportunity was, to take what Paul Ryan said and spin it back at him. And say, you know what, I agree with Speaker Ryan. I don't agree with everything he says. Policy wise. But I do agree we need to unite the party. I need his help in uniting the party. He didn't do that. I think that would have worked out better for Donald Trump than putting that statement out today.
BURNETT: All right. Thanks very much. You're all going to be with me, of course, and you can see Jake's entire interview with Speaker Ryan. We're going to re-air it tonight at 9:00 Eastern.
Next, as we wait for Donald Trump to take that stage in West Virginia, hear his crucial comments for the first time when he's going to speak about Paul Ryan. Eric Trump, Trump's son is with me to react to the breaking news. And I'm also going to ask Eric about this picture from Cinco de Mayo.
Plus another top Republican telling CNN tonight he cannot yet support Donald Trump. A live report coming up. And major breaking news on Hillary Clinton. A big development in the
FBI investigation into her private e-mail server. There is a huge development tonight. And we have the very latest on it for you.
[19:19:59] BURNETT: Breaking news. We are awaiting Donald Trump. He will be taking the stage in West Virginia on the screen that you were looking at moments away. Of course perhaps going to respond to Paul Ryan's statement, highest elected Republican in the country saying he cannot back Donald Trump and he's not the only one tonight.
Arizona Senator Jeff Flake telling our Manu Raju he has a hard time seeing himself voting for his party's presumptive nominee.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JEFF FLAKE (R), ARIZONA: Some of the positions he's taken. It makes it very difficult to support him. I hope that he changes. I hope that he backs off some of those. And there is some sign that he will on the religious test for people to enter here. I think he's finessing that. I would like to see him go further.
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: What about on the wall with Mexico?
FLAKE: Well, I mean, that's -- that's in the class of kind of nutty things.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Senior political reporter Manu Raju, you saw him there OUTFRONT tonight in Phoenix.
Now, Manu, Jeff Flake calling Trump's idea, especially when you're talking about the wall, his words, quote-unquote, "nutty." Something, by the way though, a lot of Republicans support. What else did Flake tell you?
RAJU: Well, I asked specifically Erin, whether or not he would get behind a third party candidate the way -- Republicans, or including the Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse is open to the idea of a third party candidate. Flake would not go there. He said that what Donald Trump needs to do is unify the party, tamp down his rhetoric, change some of policies to get his support. But of course, if he does that, Erin, that means he may anger his supporters and it's really difficult balancing after Donald Trump.
BURNETT: And Manu, you've been talking to a lot of people including John McCain, who is defending his Senate seat this year, running for a sixth term. How worried is he about Donald Trump? Does he actually think Donald Trump could impact John McCain's re-election?
RAJU: He does. You know, I asked him specifically about that. You know, this is a state with a very heavy Latino population, and McCain believes that his record on immigration issues will be helpful for him come November. But he said there may be nothing that I could do, given the top of the ticket, how he has angered so many Latino people in his state.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: It can't help if the majority of those who will be voting at the -- for the top of the ticket have been alienated or feel that that candidate would not be in their interest. And that's the top of the ticket. I don't think you can ignore that reality.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
RAJU: Now at the same John McCain is supporting Donald Trump, unlike his colleague, Jeff Flake. It really shows some of the balancing act that John McCain is trying to do. He needs Trump supporters to come to the polls in his own re-election come November, but at the same time, he needs the Latino voters, as well. Real challenge for John McCain going forward. He says to me, this is going to be one of the toughest races of my career. I'm going to work incredibly hard. Patrick if he wins his primary, as we expect he will in the fall. Very difficult race, largely because of Donald Trump.
BURNETT: All right. Manu, thank you very much.
And OUTFRONT now, Donald Trump's son Eric Trump. And Eric, good to see you.
ERIC TRUMP, SON OF DONALD TRUMP: Good to be here, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. We're waiting your father obviously going to be speaking in West Virginia. You just heard yet another Republican say, it will be hard to support your dad. Of course, the breaking news, House Speaker Paul Ryan --
E. TRUMP: Sure.
BURNETT: Highest elected Republican in the United States right now said he's not ready to back your father. What is your father's reaction when he heard what Paul Ryan said?
E. TRUMP: Well, you know, when I heard it, I actually thought -- first of all, I thought it was a little silly but I also thought it was a little benign. I mean, my father has become, you know -- he's a Republican nominee for exactly, what, 48 hours at this point, right? My father doesn't know these people. He's not a Washington insider. Right? I mean, that's the whole thing. He's a business guy who stepped into politics. Right? He's going to have to walk the halls with these people. He's going to have to get to know a lot of these people. So, I thought it was very benign.
I mean, again, it's been 48 hours. It's still sinking in. Everybody is still getting used to it. You know? So I think that's going to come. I think that's going to come organically, I think it's going to come naturally. My father has always been a great unifier. He's going to pull people together. I can't tell you how long I spent in his office today and the amount of calls from, you know, very, very powerful people. Politicians, coming into his office saying, listen, we're behind you all of the way.
BURNETT: People saying they'll support him.
E. TRUMP: It's substantial. So, listen, it's going to come, it's going to come around. He's going to unify the party and I think at the end of the day, you see the masses. You see the amount of people that have been voting for him, right? I mean, two, three times what other primaries were. In fact, he has more people who voted for him at this point than, you know, any past primary. I mean, the winners of any past primary. Romney, et cetera, et cetera.
E. TRUMP: So he's growing the Republican Party. People will unify around him. And he'll unify around the Republican Party. I think it's just an organic process. It takes time.
BURNETT: Look, you make a strong case. But, of course, you describe Paul Ryan's comments as benign. But, you know, they were unprecedented. I mean, you know, we have described them as seismic. I mean, your father did came out with a statement at this moment. I am not ready to support Speaker Ryan's agenda. In a sense, this is a standoff though. Your father, the presumptive Republican nominee, and the current, you know, head of the Republican Party.
E. TRUMP: You always have to remember, though. Paul also said the one thing that we will not under any circumstance allow is for Hillary Clinton to become president. All right?
E. TRUMP: So it's interesting. I just --
BURNETT: Are you worried that though his nod to give me a third party option?
[19:24:48] E. TRUMP: Listen, as a non-politician, I really view this as -- listen, you know, we've got to get to know the guy, it's take some time. He's fresh, he's very new. Believe me, the one thing my father can do is unify this party. He is already growing this party. We're going to beat her. And he's great. I mean, no one wants to talk about it, but it's so great that we're out ahead of the Democrats. You know, obviously Hillary is struggling with Bernie. She is struggling with this whole e-mail mess, she's struggling with obviously the hacker that apparently got into the server. She's got real problems of her own. It's great as a Republican Party that we have one candidate, and we can organize and we can get prepared and we get a jump start on the Democrats.
BURNETT: All right. So you think he's going to get past this and I know he's of course scheduled to meet with Speaker Ryan. So, also, that we've herd -- you talk about people calling his office saying they're getting on board. Obviously, we're talking about a lot of people are saying the opposite. So, right now there is a spike going on within the party. Rick Perry, Governor from Texas. He came out and just said to CNN that he is now supporting your father, he was a Ted Cruz supporter. That he's open to any way to do that, that he needs to, including VP.
E. TRUMP: Yes.
BURNETT: How long is the VP list right now?
E. TRUMP: Long. And, you know, I say this all of the time. My father -- and I said this to you before. My father is going to find a great worker. A great doer. It's not just going to be somebody who, you know, might be able to pull a state or somebody who, you know, might appeal to this whole group of people. I mean, he's goings to find somebody who works tirelessly to fix the country. I mean, my father will be the first person in the office every single day in the White House. He will be the last person to leave.
He will work every single weekend. He will not take vacations. I mean, that's who my father is in the business world. That's how he'll be in the White House. And believe me, his VP candidate will be incredibly qualified, will definitely know his way around, you know, his or her.
E. TRUMP: But will be incredibly, incredibly qualified and will be a worker. I mean, and that's who my father has surrounded himself around with his whole life. And, you know, every business and every field he's ever been in and that's what he'll choose for the White House.
BURNETT: So, one more question before we go in honor of Cinco de Mayo, your father tweeted today.
E. TRUMP: One of the great tweets ever.
BURNETT: When you hear a tweet and your father -- I know you don't know whether to laugh or cry or what. But here he is pictured himself eating a taco bowl, with a caption, Happy Cinco de Mayo, the best taco bowls are made in Trump Tower Grill. I love Hispanics.
E. TRUMP: Which is actually true by the way. The best taco bowls are made in Trump Tower and I ate them all the time, so.
BURNETT: Funny to some though. Some though of course cringe. And you heard John McCain taking it very seriously saying, look, he's scared your father is going to hurt his re-election chances because he needs the Hispanic vote in Arizona. Do you really think Senator McCain is wrong?
E. TRUMP: I do think he is wrong. I mean, listen, I think my father is growing the party. I was just talking about, I mean, we're millions and millions of votes ahead of anybody. He's growing the Republican Party. The amount of Democrats and Independents that are switching over to the Republican Party because they want to vote for him is unprecedented. You know, that's the difference between my father and a regular politician. He can be fun. He was eating a taco bowl. It happens to be Cinco de Mayo. He takes a picture and he puts it on.
I mean, versus all of the other politicians out there who have three lawyers and 12 pundits and four pollsters and they're looking at every tweet. I mean, that's my father being himself. My father has got a tremendous personality, he's a fun guy, he was having a good time. And I saw that come across. I was hysterically laughing and I retweeted it right away. And he was just -- he was having a lot of fun. And I think sometimes the authenticity has won the day in this election. And I think people are actually looking for an authentic candidate for the first time in history.
BURNETT: All right. Well, Eric, thank you very much. Good to see you. I appreciate it.
E. TRUMP: Great being with you.
BURNETT: And Eric Trump, of course, as we await Donald Trump speaking at that rally in West Virginia tonight.
OUTFRONT next, more breaking news. The investigation into Hillary Clinton's e-mails. Investigators telling CNN, breaking news right now on this. A major development after the break. And a Republican congresswoman who has been mentioned as a possible Trump VP. She is my guest tonight. Her reaction to Speaker Paul Ryan.
[19:32:17] BURNETT: Breaking news on the Hillary Clinton e-mail investigation. And I'm going to get to that in a moment. You see Donald Trump, though, at the podium, just getting there in West Virginia. We're going to be monitoring this and see if he makes his first public comments speaking about Paul Ryan.
So, we're going to be listening to it. The moment that starts, we'll bring new this.
I do want to bring you other breaking news, as we monitor that for you. This on Hillary Clinton.
Tonight, U.S. officials tell CNN that the FBI's probe is coming to an end. Investigators have interviewed Clinton's closest aides, including longtime advisor, Huma Abedin.
CNN justice reporter Evan Perez has been working his sources on this story.
And obviously, Evan, this could be an incredible development for Hillary Clinton tonight.
EVAN PEREZ, CNN JUSTICE REPORTER: That's right, Erin. And at this point, you know, there's still a lot of investigation to be done by the FBI. They are trying to wrap this up very soon.
But at this point, what we know, and what sources we've been talking to, they have not yet found any indications or anything to prove that Hillary Clinton violated the law, willfully violated the law. Obviously, there's no firm conclusions yet. But this is always obviously -- this has been an investigation that has been surrounded by politics.
And the question has always been, whether this is something that Hillary Clinton needs to worry about, as we keep an eye on the calendar and the upcoming Democratic convention. We know that with the fact that these aides have now been brought in for interviews, that the FBI is trying to wrap this up. And we expect that this is going to be done in the next couple of weeks, the next few weeks, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. So, then done in the next few weeks, obviously one big question mark out there, though, is Secretary Clinton. Is she herself going to be interviewed? Will that be part of this?
PEREZ: Absolutely. She has to be interviewed. And we expect that the FBI and her lawyers will make arrangements for that interview in the next couple of weeks.
Now, the question is, the logistics of this. Obviously, this is a presidential candidate, somebody who is actively campaigning. She is followed by a press corps. She's protected by the Secret Service. This is not your normal FBI interview.
So, the question is, how is this going to be done? Is it going to be done at her home in Chappaqua, or here in Washington, or her offices in New York?
We're told that that is -- those are details that are still being worked out. But absolutely, the FBI plans to interview her. And then after they -- finish their findings, turn it over to the Justice Department, which will make a final determination as to whether or not there is a crime that will be charged in this case, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Evan Perez, giving a time line here, so crucial, a few weeks, perhaps.
Mark Preston, John Avlon are back with me. Joining me now, Trump supporter Kayleigh McEnany, and Maria Cardona, she's a Hillary Clinton supporter and her firm currently does work for a pro-super Clinton PAC.
So, Maria, let me start with you. How big is this news?
[19:35:01] It could be weeks away and so far, no evidence of any intent to wrongdoing.
MARIA CARDONA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, that's actually not really -- nothing new to the campaign, as you know, Erin. They have been saying for a while that they're quite confident that the review process is not going to find anything untoward.
And, frankly, back in August, the Clinton campaign conveyed directly to the Justice Department that Secretary Clinton would be available at any time and anywhere to answer any questions that the review process wanted her to answer.
That still stands. They have not asked her to do that interview yet. So, I think in the minds of the campaign and in the secretary herself, the fact that they are now talking about doing that interview which, in this kind of process is one of the interviews they do towards the end, means that this process is coming to an end, which I think is good news, because I don't think that they're going to find anything.
BURNETT: All right. Maria, thank you. And I'm here with my panel, but I do want to listen in now to Donald Trump speaking at that rally in West Virginia. Let's listen now.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Right?
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
There's always been something about West Virginia. I'll tell you a little secret. I've always been fascinated by the mines. I always have. I don't know why.
You know, I love construction. I love the whole thing. I can tell you more about Caterpillar tractors than the people that work there.
I just -- I just know -- I love that business. You know, I love construction. And I love -- and I'll tell you, I've just always been fascinated by the mines, and the courage of the miners and the way the miners love what they do. They love what they do, you know?
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
And I was talking to some of the people and I said, well, why don't they move, why don't they go someplace else? Of course, in this country, you can't really go anywhere else, because you can't get a job, because jobs are going to everyone else but us.
You know, we're sending our jobs to Mexico. China is taking our jobs. Japan. They're all taking our jobs, folks. That's all going to change very rapidly, I promise.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
But the miners don't want to leave anyway. Is that right? You want to stay here. You want to open the mines. We're going to open the mines.
I see over here, Trump digs coal. Look at that. Trump digs coal. That's true. That's true. I do.
So I've always been fascinate by it. I've been fascinated by the whole sequence of doing it. It's incredible. The engineering, now, that's involved and the safety and all that's taking place over the last number of years, especially over the last ten years. And all of it is getting safe, and as it gets safe, they're taking it away from you in a different way.
And I just think you're amazing people. And you watch what happens. If it I win, we're going to bring those miners back. You're going to be so proud of your president. You're going to be so proud of your country. You watch.
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
And the other night, you know, we had a big night. We won Indiana. And -- that was a great night. And I had so much help.
Bobby Knight. Boy, did he help me. Wow, Bobby knight. And we had Lou Holtz and the great coach from Purdue. We had a lot of people. Digger Phelps.
But I'll tell you. Bobby went -- and he called me like a year ago. And Bobby is -- when 900 games, won three championships, won the Olympics, won the Pan Am Games.
And about a year ago, before I was going to run -- I've been doing this nine and a half, ten months. Before I really made up my mind, I got a call from Bobby Knight, who I never met, but I know Bobby Knight.
He's tough, he's smart and he knows how to win. That's a good combination, right? By the way, that's what the country needs.
And he calls me up. And I recognize his voice immediately. He goes, "Mr. Trump, this is Bobby knight. I hope you run." I said, "Bobby, run for what?" OK, because I'm telling you, I was three or four months away. He said, "I hope you run, Mr. Trump. You run for president, you are going to make this country great again. I've been following."
And you what, he is -- he's an expert on talent! He's talent. And he said, "I just hope you run." I said "Well, you know, Bobby, I haven't made up my mind yet. But I would love your number. And let me call you back if I decide to run." and he said "well, you have my support. Call me back."
So, you know, a lot of time goes by. And then the race is -- and I'm winning and winning and doing really great. But it's -- you've been hearing me say it's a rigged system.
[19:40:00] But now, I don't say it anymore because --
BURNETT: Donald Trump speaking in West Virginia. You know, what's very interesting about this, we're waiting comments on Paul Ryan, hasn't yet addressed it.
But what he has talked about, Kayleigh, is the people around him. This is a different crowd than we have seen. This is a coal mining state. It's a state that has gone for Hillary Clinton, has gone for bill Clinton. And now is very solidly going for Donald Trump.
KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Absolutely. And this sends a very important message, because we saw Hillary Clinton just a few days ago come out and back pedal on her statements with regard to coal. And the next few days, you see Donald Trump in West Virginia, trying to appeal to the same crowd and say, hey, I haven't forgotten you, but Barack Obama, let's not forget, said he would make coal prohibitively expensive and shut down factories. Hillary Clinton mimicked that statement.
So Donald Trump is there to pick up voters they have lost.
BURNETT: And, of course, Mark Preston, he's getting these voters and this is going to be a big win. But it doesn't make up for voters that he has turned away at this point.
MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Right. Women voters, specifically. Here's the thing, though -- just watching that, just for that snapshot in time. He talks about I'm going to bring back the jobs, open the mines. The mines. The mines. You want me to open the mines.
BURNETT: The mines.
PRESTON: Basically, what 's saying is, I'm going to get you jobs, OK? Because you have no hope. You have had no hope for many, many years.
However, there's no specific policy to get those mines open or for that matter, to create new jobs, because we do know that coal is a dying industry. That's a problem.
JOHN AVLON, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: No, and the anti trade message really does sell. And look, he's taking care of a clear contrast where Democrats have a hard time appealing to white working class voters who are in coal country. That's going to be a fundamental problem.
And let's face it, Bill Clinton won West Virginia. But Republicans are going to win West Virginia. Arkansas, obviously, originally Clinton country probably going to go Republican. But he's exploiting that.
The thing is, you can't just sort of be Pat Buchanan with a magic wand say you're going to make it better. You've got to have policies to back behind the emotional impact.
MCENANY: -- artificially inflate renewable sources of energy that don't work, that aren't popular. The subsidies haven't worked and in doing that, shut down factories. We have seen that time and time again with Barack Obama.
So, the first thing he's going to do is stop artificially propping up energy people don't want and allowing coal miners to keep their jobs.
AVLON: Those have also created some manufacturing jobs and we have seen manufacturing increase in --
MCENANY: Oh, no, no, cost more jobs than it helps.
ALVON: That's not the case. But in terms of the battleground constituencies, West Virginia coal country is going to look a lot more like Trump country than Clinton country.
BURNETT: Final word.
PRESTON: Hope and change. That's what Donald Trump is saying right now. What Barack Obama said in 2008. I'm going to bring hope and I'm going to change things. And that's what he's saying.
BURNETT: And in that crowd, they are very much buying that message.
Thanks to all.
And next, a leading Republican who is saying she will support the nominee. The nominee is Donald Trump. She's going to respond to Paul Ryan, also happens to be among those apparently on the list for Trump's V.P. My guest, Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn.
And Jeanne Moos, the search for a V.P. pick. Could it really come to this?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, I'm anticipating he'll ask me to be vice president.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[19:46:54] BURNETT: Top breaking news story tonight, House Speaker Paul Ryan telling CNN he is not ready to support Donald Trump as his party's nominee.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: I think there's work that needs to be done in order to unify the party. I think our nominee, our presumptive nominee needs to do that. I want to be a part of helping him do that. But right now, no, I think that, you know, there's some work to do here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Representative Marsha Blackburn has said she will support the Republican nominee. She's OUTFRONT from Nashville, Tennessee.
Representative, it's good to talk to you again.
REP. MARSHA BLACKBURN (R), TENNESSEE: Thanks, Erin.
BURNETT: Let's get your reaction here to Paul Ryan. Were you surprised to hear him say this? What's your reaction to your speaker?
BLACKBURN: I think it's probably a very honest reaction. And he went on to say that he looks forward to working to getting to that point, and Erin, I think they will sit down, they will focus on some issues, and probably drill down on the things that the American people are saying we want these as priorities -- national security, jobs and economic security, retirement security. They will drill down on that, and I think you will see Speaker Ryan and most of the, if not all 246 House Republicans, supporting Donald Trump. And working to make certain that we defeat Hillary Clinton in November.
BURNETT: So, you don't think that this in any way encourages some of your colleagues who have come out and said they will not support Donald Trump to hope for a third party? Is Paul Ryan not opening the door?
I mean, let's just be fair. What he has done today is an unprecedented thing in American politics, for the highest-ranking Republican to come out and say I'm not ready to support the presumptive GOP nominee.
BLACKBURN: I think you're going to see everybody come around and the party unite. Bear in mind, we have had millions of new voters. Donald Trump, Ted Cruz have brought out millions of new voters into the Republican Party.
Our challenge is to make certain that we welcome them, that we listen to them, and that we learn from what they perceive to have been shortcomings or misgivings of Republican elected officials in Washington, D.C.
And I'm doing a lot of listening to people that are saying, this is what we're dissatisfied with. We want to see some action. We don't want to see you tweak around the edges. We want to see government reengineered. We want you to get the debt under control.
BURNETT: All right. So you're saying some positive things here about Donald Trump. And you have said, Congresswoman Blackburn that you will support the Republican nominee.
BLACKBURN: Yes, I will.
BURNETT: You specifically said that.
BURNETT: So, now there is a presumptive Republican nominee.
BLACKBURN: That's right.
BURNETT: So, do you support, do you endorse Donald Trump?
BLACKBURN: I support Donald Trump. He will be our nominee. I am going to work tirelessly to make certain that Hillary is not elected in November.
We have to make certain we return to focusing on individual freedoms, free people, free markets and that we get this country back on the right track. I talk to people every day that say I like the fact that Donald Trump says he is going to get Obamacare off the books. I like the fact that he is going to work to solve the illegal immigration problem. Those are things people want to see done, Erin, and they want to see
some deliverables from elected officials. What has frustrated them is they I like that he is going to work to solve the illegal immigration problem. Those are things people want to see done, Erin, and they want to see some deliverables from elected officials.
[19:50:06] What has frustrated them is they have not seen those.
BURNETT: So, Congresswoman, if he asks you to serve as vice president, your name was floated out there, would you accept?
BLACKBURN: You know, I got to tell you, a -- somebody who is from a red state is not going to be the nominee. I am flattered and honored that people consider my name and you hear it floated about but I've got to tell you, it will not be me, but I'm going to be there on the frontlines fighting every step of the way to make certain that we have Donald Trump as our next president of the United States and that Hillary Clinton does not end up as president of the United States.
Think of all the judges that are going to be appointed, think of all the people that want to see our tax system overhauled, that want to see regulation cut back and the EPA brought under control. I am fighting for every one of those people every day and we've got an election to win in November.
BURNETT: All right. Well, Congresswoman, thank you very much. Appreciate your time.
BLACKBURN: Thank you.
BURNETT: Representative Marsha Blackburn, she says she will not be Trump's VP. Who will be? Jeanne Moos is next.
BURNETT: Here's Jeanne Moos.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONENT: Name that veep.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Gingrich is a really interesting wildcard.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think Christie is the favorite.
[19:55:01] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor Martinez of New Mexico.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ben Carson.
Or could a guy who's been --
TRUMP: Little Marco.
MOOS: -- grow up to be Vice President Rubio. TRUMP: It could happen.
MOOS: Trump veep stakes mania has hit.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He should run as the first father, daughter ticket, have his daughter run with him.
MOOS: Prepare for V.P. survivor.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On vice president island, 20 amazing Trump supporters in a battle for the ultimate prize.
MOOS: Even the current V.P. joked about it.
BIDEN: I am anticipating he will ask me to be vice president.
MOOS: The Donald see to op hints.
TRUMP: Somebody maybe that's even been a senator.
MOOS: Former Senator Scott Walker spent an hour and a half with the Donald last month. Some would be running mates seem to be running away.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm going to pass, I like my job.
MOOS: When "The New York Times" asked a Jeb Bush adviser about Jeb being a V.P., this was the written response.
GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), OHIO: There's zero chance. Erin, there's more chance of you being Donald Trump's vice president man me.
MOOS: But Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallon gushed, "I would be honored if you called and said you wanted me to help make America great again."
And Chris Christie didn't say no?
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: I'll decide in my heart what I wanted to do.
MOOS: But what's the Donald want?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Someone who complements me.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Someone with a different skill set than you?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, someone that compliments me, Donald, you're great.
MOOS: Get out the popcorn.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who will advance, who will be kicked off the island.
TRUMP: Gary, you're impeached. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Vice president island, this summer on every cable news channel.
MOOS: And every late night comedy show.
Jeanne Moos, CNN --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said he wants a qualified running mate. When asked why, Trump said opposites attract.
MOOS: New York.
BURNETT: We'll be right back.
BURNETT: Thanks for watching.
"AC360" starts now.