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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Awaiting Clinton Remarks on FBI Email Review; Hillary Clinton Speaking At News Conference in Iowa; FBI Investigating New Emails Tied to Clinton Case; FBI Investigating New Emails Tied to Clinton Case. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired October 28, 2016 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[19:00:14] ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening, I'm Erin Burnett, OUTFRONT tonight breaking news. October bombshell. The FBI reviewing new e- mails tonight related to Hillary Clinton's private e-mail server. Right now, you see stage in Des Moines, Iowa. Hillary Clinton going to be making a statement any moment. The first time today. Breaking her silence on this FBI announcement.
So, we are going to be seeing that any moment. Here is what we know right now. A law enforcement official telling CNN the e-mails were sent or received by Clinton's long-time aide Huma Abedin. Another source tell us, there are thousands of messages taken from at least one electronic device that we shared by Abedin and her now a strange Anthony Weiner. The e-mails were uncovered during an FBI investigation into the Anthony Weiner's sexting scandal which was purportedly with an under-aged girl. That's why the FBI was involved. And Hillary Clinton as I said going to be appearing on that stage.
Second time, she's spoken since the news broke but she had been giving so far her standard stump speech. She has not said a single word about this e-mail investigation that has shocked and stunned so many October bombshell. You see them getting ready, she's going to speak momentarily.
Jeff Zeleny is traveling with Clinton, joining me on the phone. And Jeff, obviously she's in Des Moines, Iowa. Wrapped up a rally. Said nothing. Now going to be coming back with a statement. What more can you tell us?
JEFF ZELENY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Indeed, Erin. I'm just standing a few feet away from those flags as you see and she will be holding what appears to be a press conference. There are cameras set up as you can see and reporters, we are escorted into this room just a few moments ago in Roosevelt High School where she was giving the second of two stops speeches that he said here in Iowa where she is locked in a tight race with Donald Trump. Now this is not something that Secretary Clinton normally does. She takes questions occasionally on her plane. But it's been quite some time since she's had something in this setting like this.
But Erin this is a different moment in this campaign. As we know, 11 days left and this was something that has taken the campaign by complete surprise. They want to get ahead of this obviously. We do not know exactly what she will say or if she'll take questions from reporters. But this looks to me like the setting where she will answer questions from reporters. They clearly want to get beyond this if possible or at least address questions and get her voice into this story. Because as we know Donald Trump will be in Cedar Rapids, Iowa tonight just two hours down the road and you can be sure he will be talking about this tonight -- Erin.
BURNETT: Certainly will. All right. So, Jeff, stay with me. We are about one or two minutes away.
I want to just bring in Evan Perez. Our justice correspondent. Evan, you have an answer to perhaps the most crucial question. Obviously, what's in the e-mails. We don't yet know that. But why? Why now? Why did FBI Director Comey say he had to do this today?
EVAN PEREZ, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well Erin, you know, this is an issue that began yesterday when the FBI director was briefed by his investigators and they told him that they had found these thousands of e-mails that were part of this Anthony Weiner investigation. The investigation into alleged texting by Weiner and a 15-year-old girl in North Carolina. That's in a separate investigation unrelated to the Clinton email investigation. And his investigators came to him and said, we have these e-mails.
They are related to the Clinton e-mail server investigations. We still don't know exactly whether or not there is classified information in here but there is enough concern here that it has to be brought to the attention of the other agencies. The CIA, the State Department that owned this information. They have to review it to determine whether or not it is classified. And once that decision was made, which was we have to do that. Comey felt he had no choice but to go back to members of Congress. He's testified several hours before them and tell them and provide --
BURNETT: All right. I'm going interrupt you. Sorry. Hillary Clinton has just approached the podium to break her silence on this issue. Let's listen.
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I'd like to say a few words and then take your questions. I have now seen Director Comey's letter to Congress. We are 11 days out from perhaps the most important national election of our lifetimes. Voting is already under way in our country. So, the American people deserve to get the full and complete facts immediately. The director himself has said he doesn't know whether the e-mails referenced in his letter are significant or not.
I'm confident whatever they are will not change the conclusion reached in July. Therefore it is imperative that the bureau explain this issue in question whatever it is without any delay. So I look forward to moving forward to focus on the important challenges facing the American people, winning on November 8th and working with all Americans to build a better future for our country. Thank you.
[19:05:08] UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Secretary Clinton, have you or any of your advisors heard from Comey or anyone else at the FBI today? And are you concerned at all that these new e-mails that they say will found will in any way reveal classified information that you sent or received?
CLINTON: No. We have not been contacted by anyone. First we knew about it is I assume when you knew about it. When this letter sent to Republican members of the House was released. So we don't know the facts. Which is why we are calling on the FBI to release all of the information that it has. Even Director Comey noted that this new information may not be significant. So let's get it out.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You have 11 days to go. What would you say to a voter who right now will be seeing you and hearing what you are saying? Saying, I didn't trust her before. I don't trust her any more right now and they are heading to the ballot box tomorrow?
CLINTON: You know I think people a long time ago made up their minds about the e-mails. I think that is factored into what people think. And now they are choosing a president. So I would urge everybody to get out and vote early in all the states that have early voting. Because I think Americans want a president who can lead our country, who can get the economy working for everyone, not just those at the top and you can bring our country together. I offer that. I can do that. And I'm very confident that the American people know that and we're going to continue to discuss what's at stake in this election because I believe that it is one of the most consequential elections ever.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thanks very much. Secretary Clinton, there are some reports that these e-mails were found on devices that belong to your aide Huma Abedin and her husband Anthony Weiner. Have you spoken to Huma? Was she able to give you any information about that?
CLINTON: You know, we heard these rumors. We don't know what to believe. And I'm sure there will be even more rumors. That is why it is incumbent upon the FBI to tell us what they are taking about Jeff. Because right now your guess is as good as mine. And I don't think that's good enough. So we've made it very clear that, if they are going to be sending this kind of letter that is only going originally to Republican members of the House that they need to share whatever facts they claim to have with the American people. And that is what I expect to happen.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Thanks very much, everybody.
CLINTON: Thank you all.
BURNETT: All right. They are trying to get more questions in. You saw Hillary Clinton taking just a few questions there from reporters. Really putting this on the FBI. She's clearly, I agree that the FBI hasn't put out the details they have from the e-mail saying they need to put that information out echoing what her campaign chairman John Podesta said earlier today. And in response to one question, you heard Jim what she said about what's in the emails. Your guess is as good as mine and I didn't think that's enough. Mark Preston is OUTFRONT with me now. Our executive editor for
Politics Jeffrey Toobin. Our senior legal analyst, former federal prosecutor David Gergen who served as advisors for four presidents and Tom Fuentes former FBI assistant director.
Let me just start with you Mark Preston, what do you make of her strategy? This is going on offense. This is, come on FBI.
MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: Right.
BURNETT: You say you got something. Put it out there or I have nothing to say.
PRESTON: Well, we know Huma Abedin was travelling with her daily to Iowa. And from what our reporting is telling us that in fact it was a shared device that Huma was using with her husband Anthony Weiner. I suspect they do have an idea of what Huma had forwarded as we suspect to these devices. So look, a very good defense is a strong offense. And the fact of the matter is, this is probably, there is a chance that this doesn't necessarily touch Hillary Clinton other than the fact that one of her aides might have done something that was wrong.
JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Can I just add?
TOOBIN: We can argue as the clever strategy to take the offense. One thing that we know almost for sure is that the FBI is not going to release any more information for the next 11 days. Because this is an issue about classified information. Classified information --
BURNETT: Right. You can't just throw them out there then the world could see classified e-mails.
TOOBIN: That is right. What they have to do first is go to the FBI, go to the CIA and say, is this classified? Is this inappropriate material? That is a process that takes a long time? So, you know, this is a clever challenge to the FBI. All but certain not to be answered.
BURNETT: So, Tom Fuentes, let me ask you. Because, you know, you just heard what Hillary Clinton just said. It is imperative for the director to explain himself incumbent on the FBI to tell us. Is there any chance, any chance in the next 11 days that Director Comey is going to say, okay, here is what I am talking about? Here's the e- mails. Who sent them here? Who received them?
[19:10:13] TOM FUENTES, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: I agree with Jeffrey Toobin. I would be shocked if Director Comey or the FBI issues any additional details about the reopening of the investigation or what's related to it or any of the information they have at hand. And it will take a long time. If there was classified material in the material that was on the device, now you have an additional person that wasn't part of the original investigation that they are now learning, Anthony Weiner, that he was looking or had access to look at material that may had been classified. So, that is another element of the investigation and there may be other messages on her devices that they weren't aware of before and it adds to a new element or a new avenue of investigation that wasn't being pursued in the first place.
BURNETT: And this is of course something by the way Donald Trump a long time ago had raised this issue of Huma Abedin and Anthony Weiner perhaps sharing classified information. We're going to get to that later. But Jeff Zeleny is back with us now.
Jeff you were in the room. You know, one thing I noticed obviously was incredibly brief statement and incredible brief answers. And she only took a few questions. She had a smile but she seemed very angry and it was a very tense moment. What was it like in the room?
ZELENY: I don't know if I would say angry as much Erin as wanting to sort of, you know, get on the record about this and really echo what her campaign chairman John Podesta said earlier about this really calling on the FBI to release more information. But she answered virtually no questions. I mean, she took questions that she certainly did not say anything at all about the question about Huma Abedin. That our law enforcement sources are telling our colleagues here that it is her device or Anthony Weiner's device. She did not answer that at all.
And one thing Erin, you did not see on camera, whether she was walking out of room, one of my colleagues asked the question if she was afraid that this would sink her campaign. She laughed, as she often does when she's asked something she does not want to answer. It's just sort of a defiant laugh I guess is how I would describe it. But look, this is just something that they wanted to, I'm told by one advisor to inject themselves into the conversation and bloodstream and really put out a call to Democrats to make it look like this is part of this partisan inquiry that has been going on all long here. But this comes as Donald Trump is going to, also be here in Iowa within the hour, surely addressing this when he speaks in Cedar Rapids. So they tried to add her voice Erin, but I'm not sure it answered many questions, perhaps she just left the ones already had, still hanging out there.
BURNETT: Yes. I mean, David Gergen. No questions answered and you heard, you know, Jeff Zeleny using the word when a reporter asked, at the end, you know, she laughed, to give a defiant laugh as he described it.
GERGEN: Listen. Let's go back to the beginning of this. First of all, I think it is important to set a foundation. And that is from my point of view, the FBI did the right thing when it revealed its investigation and went as public as it did early on. Having done that, when it discovered this new trove of e-mails, it seems to me that Director Comey did exactly the right thing. He had to go public or otherwise he would have been accused after this election of hiding it from the voters who had a right to know before the election. And the Republicans would have had a very strong charge against him.
So, I think up until this point, he's done the right thing. But I must be in the same breath, it seems to me Mrs. Clinton and John Podesta are right. We've been left dangling by the FBI right now on what's involved here. What's really going on? I think at minimum they ought to identify how many real e-mails we're talking about. They ought to give us some sense. Huma Abedin was her aide.
There are likely to be a lot of e-mails here that are not about national security but rather about logistical details of running the State Department, you know, and being secretary. So, we need to know, are the bulk of these e-mails, very personal and very business related or the buck of -- do they have national security? We shouldn't be left just dangling there. I just disagree that this is the last we should hear from the FBI.
BURNETT: All right. Lot of questions on that but Evan Perez, let me just give you a chance to answer this. What is the FBI director going to do? I mean, you know, you heard Jeff say, he can't. He can't come out and give more information. Will he even do with David Gergen say give us a sense of how many e-mails were talking about or anything?
PEREZ: Well, you know, that is one of the things that I think that is behind closed doors at the FBI Headquarters that they are thinking about is that, you have to think that when Hillary Clinton comes out and also by the way Republicans are also asking for more information. Because they believe that there should be some more information put out here. He sent this three paragraph letter which really left more questions than it provided answers.
So, look, he's been getting criticized by Donald Trump. They've called him a lackey, they've said that the FBI was corrupted by the Obama administration and by the Clintons. And now we have the Democrats, Diane Feinstein sent a very tough letter tonight in which she's called it appalling that the FBI Director would violate what she said was the tradition to not inject itself just a few days before an election. So, obviously there is a lot of pressure here. He's withstood it so far, it's been a very tough period for Comey and for the FBI. We'll see whether or not this changes anything. I'm not sure that it will.
[19:15:25] BURNETT: Mark, what do you think? I mean obviously --
PRESTON: Look, there's a law enforcement reality of how the FBI operates and how Comey doesn't really want to get, you know, drawn into this other than trying to do his job. There is a political reality though. Let's just take two test cases. This test case right now where this comes out at around 1:00 or 2:00 this afternoon. Hillary Clinton addresses it by 7:00. OK? Strong offense. Doesn't necessarily answer any questions. But had she gone into hiding? She would look like she's hiding something.
BURNETT: So, you don't think that the delay of six or seven hours, that was not a long delay in your mind, that was --
PRESTON: In this campaign absolutely not.
PRESTON: I mean, given the sensitive nature of this. Donald Trump, the "Access Hollywood" tape took them the whole day until midnight to address that.
PRESTON: Listen, I am just saying that I think the political reality whether or not she answered questions. Getting in front of a camera though, they had to do that.
BURNETT: So, Tom Fuentes, what does the FBI do next here?
FUENTES: I know it is an ongoing debate at the FBI headquarters right now. I talked to several officials about it. And, you know, in terms of FBI policy, Director Comey deviated from normal policy back in July when he announced the closing of the investigation before even sending it to Department of Justice prosecutors for a determination of whether it should be prosecuted. So now he's kind of, you know, painted himself into a corner where he had to deviate again to say, wait, we've got new information and we're going to take another look at this.
So, you know, I think they have been talking about how to stop the bleeding for a while at FBI headquarters especially much of the reporting that's come that's been untrue. For example, the reporting that Cheryl Mills laptops. They made an agreement with her, they and looked at her laptops and then destroyed them and destroyed evidence afterward. That is not true. Not one computer or laptop or device has been destroyed by the FBI or any of the owners with permission of the FBI in this investigation. So that was false reporting and there are a number of aspects that have been like that, they are debating what do about addressing the information.
BURNETT: OK. Jeff?
TOOBIN: There is an informal but widely recognized FBI policy that you don't make a politically sensitive announcement within sixty days of an election. Here we are 11 days away. If he says something else, ten days, seven days, six days before an election, there is nothing he can say that would resolve this issue.
(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)
FUENTES: Part of the concern of the FBI is that they feel that the Clinton staff delayed this for a long time. Obstructed the release of messages and all that and caused this investigation to be started late and now it comes up at this stage right before the election. That they could have been investigated a year and a half earlier and put away much earlier and now they are faced with this situation that it is right before the Election Day.
BURNETT: Because David, what are they supposed to do? They find out about thousands more e-mails. We don't know how many. That's the number being thrown about. Thousands more e-mails. I mean, what is he supposed to do, say nothing? I mean, you can't say nothing.
GERGEN: Well, you can't say nothing. But let me just say this. Look, it is inconsistent for the FBI to be leaking things. To have individuals for the FBI leaking things to reporters and to say, no, Director Comey can't say anything. They ought to speak with one voice. Director Comey out to give us more information. He cannot leave this country in a sense of mystery about what this is all about. It is unfair to the voters. It is unfair to both parties. They have to tell us everything they know. It just seems to me that is clear and obvious that you can't leave the country dangling on the eve of election with something which is so sensitive. Having opened it up they have to deal with it.
BURNETT: So, all right. Let's say they put out how many e-mails there are. They don't know how many if they are classified or not. They can't release them specifically because some of them could be classified. So, Jeff Toobin, let's just say this goes to after the election. Let's say she wins. What happens then? They have to continue it. What if this something that is truly a bombshell, then what?
TOOBIN: Then Jim Comey says, the Department of Justice needs to appoint an independent counsel. Special prosecutor. I mean, certainly this can't be investigated further if Hillary Clinton is the president of the United States, if they feel, if Jim Comey feels that this needs to be criminally investigated more fully, it has to go to an independent council. And there is a long tradition whether it's in Watergate or Iran contra of Independent counsels, special prosecutors and that's what it has to happen.
PRESTON: You know, forgive me for not knowing if this has happen in the last two or three minutes because this is moving so quickly. I can't believe we haven't heard from House Republicans right now saying, they are going to be holding hearings Monday on this. Like I can't believe we, again, political play. But Jeffrey we've already heard Jason Chaffetz say, in the last 72 hours that he has two years' worth of investigations he's going to launch against Hillary Clinton.
[19:20:10] TOOBIN: Given the political skill demonstrated by the House Republicans in the Benghazi committee, the best thing that could happen to Hillary Clinton is having more hearings with people who have an obvious agenda of trying to defeat her.
KELLY: Right. They would be smart to not do that.
PRESTON: Right. But they are going to do it.
KELLY: All right. Well, thank you. All staying.
GERGEN: Isn't there one other element here?
KELLY: David, we're going to be back right after the break. Sorry. Right after the break. We're going to squeeze one in here as the breaking news coverage continues.
Donald Trump is about to take the sage at a rally in Cedar Rapids, Iowa which is just a couple hours away from where you just heard Hillary Clinton breaks her silence.
Plus, even before today's news, a tracking poll showed Trump closing in on Clinton every day this week. What is his new path to 270 tonight?
And Anthony Weiner's long and complicated relationship with the Clintons.
[19:24:16] BURNETT: Breaking news. Hillary Clinton just going before cameras, speaking for the first time about the FBI decision to review new e-mails related to her personal e-mail server. Clinton demanding the FBI releases all of the information that it has on the investigation.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CLINTON: We are 11 days out from perhaps the most important national election of our lifetimes. Voting is already under way in our country. So, the American people deserve to get the full and complete facts immediately.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Donald Trump is expected to speak very shortly also in Iowa. He's trying to capitalize on this news. He says it should disqualify Clinton from the White House.
I want to go now to Dana Bash in Cedar Rapids, that is where Trump is expected to speak momentarily. And Dana, now obviously Hillary Clinton has spoken now. She has broken her silence. What are you hearing from the Trump campaign?
DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you heard from Donald Trump himself at his stops before, the one we expect here in Iowa tonight talking about the fact that he does think as you said, this is very big news. Maybe the system he said isn't as rigged as he thought and suddenly he being praise on the FBI after there was a lot of criticism when Hillary Clinton wasn't indicted. From this crowd already, we're hearing chants "Lock her up" which is not knew.
Something that we've heard for months and months and months but it has a different sense and feeling given the news that they heard from the FBI today. You know Erin, I remember talking to a top Trump advisor recently about the fact that, you know, that they were down in the polls and this advisor who's been around a long time said, you know, the break that we need is for something not necessarily good to happen to Donald Trump but something bad to happen to Hillary Clinton. So they are hoping that this announcement or the letter that the FBI sent to Capitol Hill saying that they are reopening the e-mail investigation is that moment. We'll see.
It could be open and wrapped up soon. We just don't know how it is going to go. But I -- I can also say to you that in a place like Iowa, Erin, where they voted twice for Barack Obama and it is now leading more towards Donald Trump. This is the kind of thing that plays very well here. Because the number one thing that I hear from people not just in this crowd who are mostly die hard Trump supporters but elsewhere is the outsider versus insider. They are just sick of more of the same, they want somebody new and Donald Trump represents that. This reinforces the fact that Hillary Clinton has been in for a long time and reinforces questions about her integrity and all of the above.
BURNETT: All right. Dana, thank you. I want to bring back our panel. Mark Preston, David Gergen are with me along with Basil Smikle, Hillary Clinton supporter. And Corey Lewandowski, Trump's former campaign manager.
Basil, there are 11 days to go. Is her response enough? I mean, look, she's going on a strong offense. As long as they don't put any information out, she can say she wants the information out even if she doesn't. Because they are not putting any out. Is that going to work?
BASIL SMIKLE, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NEW YORK STATE DEMOCRATIC PARTY: Well, she was clearly forthright about it and I think she is absolutely right. Republicans and Democrats seem to want the same thing albeit for different reasons. But they want the same thing. It is not okay for there to be sort of this half statement about these e- mails coming out.
SMIKLE: We ran a full story. And, you know, the American people are owed that. Fifteen million people have voted already just about in early voting states. With more to come. And so it is unfair to them. It is unfair to the folks that are trying to go vote within the next few days and certainly on Election Day for them to not have complete information about these e-mails. So, yes I think she was absolutely right to come out and say we need this information as soon as possible.
BURNETT: And Corey do you agree? Do you want all of it out or do you have any fear that gosh, if they put it all out there, it might be nothing there.
COREY LEWANDOWSKI, DONALD TRUMP'S FORMER CAMPAIGN MANAGER: Look, here is what Tim Kaine said this weekend. You know, Director Comey is a wonderful and tough career public servant. So now we have to stand by those words and all of a sudden the Clinton campaign is trying to have it both ways. You know, for an individual who just a few months ago is saying, there's nothing to see here. All of a sudden he's come back and now all of a sudden I hear the Democrats saying that hey, guess what, this isn't fair. This isn't right.
He shouldn't do this 11 days out. He's broken, quote, "protocol of the FBI." It's amazing the hypocrisy of the Democrats all of a sudden there calling into question Jim Comey's, you know, credibility.
SMIKLE: Well, I would ask you to pump your brakes a little bit. Because the truth of the matter is that the Trump supporters have gone from and Republicans writ large have gone from trying to get the FBI to conduct an investigation when it is over not liking the results. And now embracing Director Comey and saying, yes, you know, this is great. You know, another discovery 11 days before the election. So I don't think that is something --
(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER) LEWANDOWSKI: It's not the Republicans, it's Tim Kaine said that. It's Tim Kaine said that --
SMIKLE: I don't think you should put that on the shoulders of Democrats quite frankly because --
[19:29:12] LEWANDOWSKI: So look, if you don't agree with what Tim Kaine said, your vice presidential nominee, then that is fine --
SMIKLE: Nothing to do with me-
LEWANDOWSKI: On Sunday, on Sunday, he said, he's a career and tough public servant and he's a good one. That is what he said.
SMIKLE: Which we have said all along.
LEWANDOWSKI: For the last three months, you guys have said unequivocally that he's above reproach, there is nothing to see here. Let's move along. And now all of a sudden, you guys are claiming that this is politically motivated. The bottom-line is --
(TALKING OVER EACH OTHER)
SMIKLE: No, first of all, you didn't hear those words come out of my mouth, number one. You didn't hear those words come out of my mouth, number two. Number two, what Hillary Clinton has said and what I have said here is that, it is important for this information to come out. Don't do it piecemeal. Put all the information out altogether. No one is saying anything about this --
LEWANDOWSKI: Absolutely release the 33,000 e-mails that are missing. You're exactly right. You're exactly right.
[19:30:00] She should release the 33,000 e-mails that are missing and then we'll have all the information available. She has the ability to release that. Months ago, she said she wants to release that.
So, let's have her do that so we can get all the information out in the next two or three days. It's very, very easy to release all of her emails. She should do it immediately. I agree with you.
BASIL SMIKLE, HILLARY CLINTON SUPPORTER: But here's my question, why are we talk about this in this way? Because even the director himself has said that this is not anything that has come from a server. He also said that it may be that none of these e-mails are significant.
This was -- this was a device, a laptop owned by Anthony Weiner and his wife. Where is Hillary Clinton in all of this except -- except there is an association there. But there is nothing --
ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: Well, we don't yet know who sent and received.
SMIKLE: That's exactly right. We don't know. BURNETT: One thing I'll say --
LEWANDOWSKI: Huma Abedin is her closest aide. She is her closest aide. Everyone agrees to that. If she cannot control how her information is being seen by other people, that's clearly a problem. So, one of the two should be prosecuted. If you are open to Huma Abedin being prosecuted because she can't control her emails, I'm fine with that, too.
SMIKLE: You didn't him say the word "prosecuted". You're putting a lot out there that you can't substantiate, and that's my concern. My concern is that we have taken this well beyond the facts presented to us right now, and my thin is, we need to slow down and realize that that the director himself has said and the director himself has said this is not about Hillary's e-mail server, and the information --
BURNETT: Well, he said things about the e-mail server. It's just we don't know --
BURNETT: But here is the point I think you are both pointing out here: Mark, we don't have much information. And if the FBI is true to form and doesn't put out a lot because it is under investigation or maybe all they put out a raw number of e-mails but that's it. This is just going to be speculation, because that is all it can be.
MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE EDITOR: And you have to be careful about what -- if they are put out any kind of information what they do put out. If they just put out a raw number of e-mails that doesn't tell us anything and could even lead to more speculation.
BURNETT: That's right.
PRESTON: When Hillary Clinton got into front of that podium and said -- and really threw down the gauntlet and said, you know, I want you to put this information out. She needs it out. She needs it because the idea that it is hanging out there right now and could put some kind of thought in voters' minds that what this results in is, you know, her doing something that is entirely wrong, it's more damaging than getting this information out I think.
BURNETT: And, David Gergen, here's the thing -- if this does really matter to voters, our latest CNN poll found 64 percent voters say it was an important indicator of Hillary Clinton's character and ability to serve as president, how she handled her e-mails. I mean, we asked that question about Donald Trump and the sexual assault accusations, his numbers were a little lower in terms of how relevant they thought it was. Very relevant in both cases but for her 64 percent.
So, David Gergen, I mean, there is nothing more important to her at this point than this issue.
DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: I totally agree with that. And we may have -- this may be a story that will unfold over three, four or five days and could change the tone of the election. It could change the early voting and everything.
So, I -- but I want to go back to -- as I think the FBI ought to give us more information, not only how many e-mails but characterize what's going on in these emails, because the bulk of them as I say may well be logistical, maybe how to run a staff and that sort of thing. And we need to know that. Voters need to know that.
But the other thing I must say, Erin, is that Hillary Clinton herself and the Clinton campaign ought to address this issue too. Why in the world was it that there was after they said they turned in all the e- mails, there is some device out there with tens of thousands of e- mails that the FBI didn't discover in all of its earlier things? Were the e-mails received by Hillary erased from her server but yet we have the ones that Huma has?
This is very peculiar. I don't understand how the Clinton campaign allowed itself to get into a position --
BURNETT: And we asked that question about --
GERGEN: -- where this device was only recently discovered.
BURNETT: Right, because they were asked to turn everything over. Huma Abedin had a device. She didn't turn it over.
That does raise a lot of questions, right? If they really wanted to be completely transparent about everything, all these devices would have handed to the FBI as part of the FBI email investigation. The FBI wouldn't have been looking at Anthony Weiner's purported texting of an underage girl and randomly stumble on thousands of emails related to the server.
SMIKLE: Well, I -- look, I don't know who's actually the owner, clearly.
SMIKLE: If this is a laptop that belonged to him but she used on occasion. I don't know. It could be his and it turned up in this particular investigation with respect to Anthony Weiner and the sexting, but it's not necessarily her laptop. I don't know the ins and outs.
But I would say though is that in this particular situation, it's not hers -- hers being Hillary. It is not her laptop. It belonged to someone else and why we keep sort of putting her into this mix is what's troubling to me.
GERGEN: Because they worked for her.
[19:35:01] BURNETT: And we don't know. Back to what we don't know, we don't know what the conversation topics on the email was, whether it was about the server --
LEWANDOWSKI: Erin, have Hillary Clinton -- have Hillary released her 33,000 missing e-mails as she claimed were about yoga and Hillary and Chelsea and then we'll have all the emails, we won't have to worry about this and we don't have to worry about the FBI investigation. She can release all 33,000 e-mails that she didn't turn over right now, and it will take two seconds to go through these. Done. Let's just do that.
BURNETT: Two seconds, we'll have the whole FBI thing --
BURNETT: I want to play something though, because Hillary Clinton's statement was very brief, but she did address the elephant in the room question, which is, could this derail her campaign? Someone asked her this directly and here's what she said about the results.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: The director himself has said he doesn't know whether the e-mails referenced in his letter are significant or not. I'm confident whatever they are will not change the conclusion reached in July.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Doesn't think anything is going to change about this at all. And, by the way, she went on to say this would have nothing do with the outcome of the election or not as Jeff Zeleny was reporting afterwards --
PRESTON: I mean, the bottom line is she needed to go out and address this. She addressed it in a way of trying to force the FBI to come out with information. And the fact of the matter is, at this point, in a time in the campaign when we honestly thought that Hillary Clinton was going to walk in backwards, you know, into the election. We'll have to say as David says, what happens over the next three or four or five days, right? I mean, quite frankly.
PRESTON: But it could alter the trajectory of what's been going on right now.
BURNETT: David Gergen, how can she say with such certainty that these e-mails will not effect the FBI's decision? The FBI, Comey said, there was no reason, she finds no reason to go ahead and recommend charges. So, she doesn't know what's in the e-mails which she just fully admitted, how could she say they would not -- categorically not -- impact whether he changes his mind on that?
GERGEN: I don't know. I think that, you know, that's sort of wishful thinking. I understand why she said it. And that's what campaigns do. So, I don't think we ought to hold her too much to account for that.
She must be so angry. She -- not just the FBI. She must be so angry at her team. How do they get into this situation? Why is this so sloppy that months after -- you know, Comey came forward in July. Here we are in October and the FBI just discovered this? They were under orders to produce all this stuff a long time ago. You know, we've been hearing they dragged their feet.
I don't understand. She must be so angry at her team. She must feel really let down.
BURNETT: All right. All this is happening, as a new poll comes out. This is an ABC/"Washington Post" tracking poll. And it shows Trump cutting Clinton's lead by more than half in just a matter of days. I mean, you know, it went from 12 to 4. It's a pretty stunning margin cut.
David Chalian is OUTFRONT.
And, David, Trump -- look, he's trying to take advantage of this news today, talking about it already, about to give another rally in moments in Iowa. New Hampshire, he also talked about it. Second congressional district in Maine. That is where he went. These are the places he thinks he can win to turn this.
If he's right, if he can turn those, can he pull this out, David?
DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: Erin, it is amazing. You and I have been talking about what a narrow path Donald Trump has to 270 and you're right to look at where he went today. Iowa tonight, New Hampshire and Maine for a total of 11 electoral votes in play but he needs them and take a look at why.
Here's our battleground map. Remember, I'm going to give Donald Trump all the battleground states right now. Nevada, let's say he wins. He hangs on to Utah and Arizona. I'm even going to give him the Nebraska congressional district, Ohio, North Carolina, and Florida. He's still at 265.
So, where was he today? Well, he was up in New Hampshire. In he's been able to flip that, which has been a lead for Hillary Clinton her way, he gets to 269. So, how does he get over the hump? That is why he was in Maine today. They award their votes by congressional district. If he picks up that congressional district, he gets to 270.
And remember, the Maine second congressional district is full of the type of voters that are Trump's stronghold. White non college- educated voters. A lot of those folks live up there. They think this is their path to victory. It is a narrow one. But this is how the Trump team thinks they can do it.
BURNETT: All right. David Chalian, thank you. So, Mark, on this issue, self declared independent voters. Are the people who could really decide this in each of these crucial district in Maine, and, of course, there's other states. According to poll this week, you saw Trump already gaining momentum in
this group. Two weeks ago, he was tied with Clinton. A week ago, he was up 7 and now he's up 13.
Does something like this move those voters? These so-called independents because a lot of them may already one way or another but --
PRESTON: Right. One thing it does is helps him solidify even more the Republican base where we've seen them come home so to speak. As we're seeing Democrats come home as well.
[19:40:01] But, you know, Trump hasn't been as successful with his own supporters as Hillary Clinton has been with people in her party.
But to your point about independents, we'll have to see how it plays out over the next couple of days. But there is a reason why they are independents. They don't trust either party. They go with their gut and if they go with their feeling at the time. And if they feel over the next couple of days if this is not being addressed adequately, there is a chance you could see some of them go over to Donald Trump just because of this issue.
I don't know if it is enough to win. But I think you could see it happen.
SMIKLE: I don't think it is enough to win. But I also think that what voters do and you alluded to this, what voters do in the last few days before an election is think about governance, they think about policy.
What's been missed in all the conversation about this laptop is that the Supreme Court is actually going to address this bathroom bill case in North Carolina. That is important policy for people on both sides. I would love to be talking about that. But I think that voters as we get closer to the election --
BURNETT: Sound like a Trump supporter, bring up the sexual assault -- I know I would love --
SMIKLE: I'm a policy guy. So I love talking about policy. But that said, I do think what voters look for in the last few days is governance and I've said for a long time, Donald Trump doesn't want to govern, he wants to win. Hillary Clinton wants to govern and I think the voters will --
SMIKLE: Well, govern means that you have to win (ph), right? So, yes, absolutely.
BURNETT: David Gergen, the FOX News poll when it comes to honest and trustworthy, you look at Hillary Clinton this week, their poll record, 30 percent, that's a low for them, of likely voters believe Clinton is honest and trustworthy. Sixty-seven percent said she's not. This has always been her Achilles heel.
She's talked about this, that she wants to change this perception. 11 days out. How much does something like this if it keeps dangling hurt?
GERGEN: Well, again, we don't know for sure. I think it will deepen people's feelings. I think it will motivate them to vote. Some people I think on the right will come who (INAUDIBLE) otherwise have come out.
I think a lot deepens on how she herself handles this over the next few days. She went on the offense about the question of pushing the FBI to come out with more information. But when the question came up about what you do -- have you discussed this with your aide Huma Abedin, she docked the question.
She needs to be fully transparent over the next few days about all of this., help us -- be with us over this time, see if Trump overplays his hand. That also it may happen. You know, he's been using language that's really very, very hyper and may turn a lot of people off. He needs to be careful too.
But I think a lot depends here on how she does it herself. She should not be quiet. She should continue talking about it and help us through the conversation. Help guide the conversation. I think that's what she needs to do as the leader and would help with the voting.
BURNETT: All right. Thanks to all.
And next, we're awaiting Donald Trump to speak in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. How well he play this.
And Anthony Weiner colliding with the Clintons again.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTHONY WEINER (D), FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN: I've got an enormous respect for Clintons. They have been enormous friends, to my wife and to my family.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[19:46:44] BURNETT: Breaking news: Donald Trump about to rally supporters in Iowa. He's expected to slam Hillary Clinton over the FBI announcement that it is reviewing new e-mails related to Clinton's personal server.
Jim Acosta is OUTFRONT. He's in Manchester, New Hampshire tonight.
And, Jim, the Trump campaign obviously is going to go hard after this. JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely, Erin.
They see this as a gift that keeps on giving. As a matter of fact, before Donald Trump came out to this event here in New Hampshire earlier today, the staff was telling us that he was going to be talking about Hillary Clinton' mails, and then, lo and behold, this bombshell was dropped.
I don't think they understood the magnitude of what was about to take place. And one of the most candid moments of the day is when Donald Trump came out here and said, well, they were thinking about scrapping this event because they just wanted to soak this story up. This shows you how much they have been waiting for this day to come.
And I can tell you from talking to Trump campaign advisers, surrogates, supporters over the last several months, they are feeling vindicated right now because if you look back at this e-mail saga, Hillary Clinton going in and talking to the FBI on July 3rd and the FBI director coming out on July 5th saying they're not going to bring any charges. That story about Bill Clinton on the airplane, talking to the Attorney General Loretta Lynch.
The Trump campaign has been saying and Donald Trump has been saying for months, there is a lot of smoke here. There must be fire. And so, now, at the very end of this campaign, 11 days out, they are essentially getting an answer to their prayers.
The question I think becomes, Erin, what happens to this campaign next? We're now looking at the prospect of an FBI investigation looming over this election until Election Day and very likely well after election day. And what looked like a fairly static race a fairly predictable race up until this point is now anything but.
You know, you heard Hillary Clinton earlier this hour saying she wants the FBI director to disclose more information. They want more information about what they have on these e-mails. Kellyanne Conway, the campaign manager for Donald Trump, she's saying the same thing. She's saying, yes, we want more information about these e-mails. It's one of the rare moments of this campaign where both sides are essentially on the same page at this point. They want more information because it could cut both ways, just to show you how unpredictable all of this is in the final day, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Jim, thank you very much.
And OUTFRONT now, Tim Naftali, our presidential historian.
Tim, Clinton is ahead in the latest CNN poll of polls, and, obviously, all of that taken before anything today, by six points. How much can this development, something like this happening at this late point, right, we've got 11 days. How much can it affect it?
TIM NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Well, it can effect it in a very large way, because the reason the FBI didn't indict Secretary Clinton was there was no way of proving that she knew she was putting classified information at risk.
BURNETT: The intent issue.
NAFTALI: That's right. If those e-mails should involve a conversation about classified information and the risk that Secretary Clinton was taking by using a private server, that is a game-changer. This country over the last 20 years as had more and more early voting. A lot of Americans have already voted.
BURNETT: Yes, about nearly 15 million.
NAFTALI: And every day more vote. So, whether this could shift the contest enough for her to lose, that is anyone's guess.
[19:50:07] But what it will do if something does come out of these e- mails is it is going to change the Senate races. And it is going to make it a much closer election and then raise the nastiness about a rigged election.
So, this -- this is a very, very potentially damaging story and it's not over. And I'm not suggesting that it is going to change predictions that Donald Trump's FiveThirtyEighty is going to go to fifty percent, but it is going to make the election closer and it is going to raise of trustworthiness.
BURNETT: So, she came out and she was defiant and said, look, it's incumbent on the FBI. Give us some more information. Is that how she should keep handling this? Or should she do something else? When she was asked about Huma Abedin, she demurred.
NAFTALI: I belief that a long time ago, Secretary Clinton should have explained why she chose to use a private server, which was because she did not -- I don't know her. I'm assuming given her history she didn't trust that the State Department civil servants would protect her private e-mail. So, rather than let them decide what was private from what was public, she decided to do that, her and her lawyers would do that.
That was a huge mistake. She should have explained that. She hasn't and now it trickles out, one bit. What we'll discover perhaps is that she knew she was taking a risk. Whether that was a risk of leaking classified information or not, that's the ball game. That's --
BURNETT: That could be the game-changer.
NAFTALI: That's a game-changer.
BURNETT: And, of course, the question is will we even know what those discussions were before the election happens?
All right. Tim, thank you.
And next, the long and twisted investigation between the Clintons and Anthony Weiner. You'll see the special report next.
And we are standing by for Donald Trump to speak live any moment.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [19:55:33] BURNETT: Breaking news tonight, the bombshell announcement from the FBI, the bureau review new e-mails. The FBI discovered the e-mails while investigating whether Anthony Weiner was sexting on underage girl. It is the latest episode in a complicated relationship between Weiner and the Clintons.
CHRIS FRATES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Anthony Weiner a young congressman with a bright future, and newly minted Senator Hillary Clinton started serving together on Capitol Hill in 2001. About a decade later, Weiner would marry one of Clinton's most loyal aides, Huma Abedin.
WEINER: I've got an enormous respect for the Clintons. They have been enormous friends to my wife and to my family.
FRATES: Now, Weiner's bad behavior has reignited the e-mail controversy Clinton's campaign hoped was behind them.
The new e-mails come from the FBI's investigation in the allegation that Weiner sent sexually explicit text messages to an underage girl. At a Democratic Party retreat in 2001, Weiner asked Abedin, then an aide to the senator, out for a drink. She told Weiner she had to work, but then Clinton gave her the night off, according to "Vanity Fair".
At their engagement party, Clinton said she considered Abedin she considered Abedin a second daughter. And in July 2010, Bill Clinton officiated their wedding at a swank estate on Long Island.
But the honeymoon wouldn't last long.
A year later, Weiner resigned from Congress after tweeting a picture of his crotch. Two years later, he ran for New York City mayor, a campaign that imploded after he admitted to having more lewd conversations with women he met on the Internet.
WEINER: The level of guilt and pain that I feel, I'm very sorry putting everyone in this position.
FRATES: And this year, the FBI launched investigation in the allegations Weiner exchanged sexually explicit text messages with an underage girl.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He'd ask me to undress. He's started talking sexually.
FRATES: Abedin and Weiner have since separated after six years of marriage, but the political damage was already done.
DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Who is Huma married to? One of the great sleaze bags of our time. Anthony Weiner. Did you know that?
Think of it. So, Huma is getting classified secrets. She's married to Anthony Weiner, who's a perv.
FRATES: So, Anthony Weiner, years after most observers declared him politically dead is not only back but absolutely haunting the Clinton campaign -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Chris, thank you very much.
And I want to go down to Jeff Zeleny in Des Moines where he's covering the Clinton campaign and was their for her response when she spoke out just earlier this hour.
Jeff, you know, Huma Abedin obviously is at the heart of this. And she's at the heart of Hillary Clinton herself. Now, of course, speculation about, a lot of speculation about the future role for Huma Abedin in the Clinton White House. Could this put that in jeopardy?
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Erin, I could not imagine anything could really jeopardize the closeness of this relationship between Secretary Clinton and Huma Abedin. They have been together so long through all of this.
So, the positions I'm told that she is likely to fill perhaps a deputy chief of staff role, perhaps something in charge of a political job, sort of being in charge of outreach to people but it is hard for me to imagine that anything would separate these two, because look what hasn't already. She's kept her around and she remains one of her top closest advisors and again we should point out, we don't know any classified information was on these e-mails. That would be the only thing that could potentially break up the relationship.
BURNETT: And obviously where you were moments ago when Hillary Clinton, did take a few questions, she was specifically asked about Huma Abedin. But she didn't answer, did she?
ZELENY: She did not answer and the question was, have you talked to Huma Abedin about what may be in those e-mails? And she deflected it into say the FBI did not say what they're looking for, and, of course, FBI did not say that they're specifically Anthony Weiner's emails. But that's what our reporting indicates. But she did not answer the question if she had talked to her about this.
But, Erin, it is impossible to imagine that she did not. Huma Abedin was traveling with her throughout the day and on the press plane and on the campaign plane, the two of them sit in a front cabin virtually by themselves, secluded from most other advisers.
So, it would be virtually unimaginable to imagine them spending the whole day and not talk about this bombshell to their campaign -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Jeff Zeleny, thank you very much.
And thanks to all of you for joining us. Don't forget, you can watch us the show anytime, anywhere on CNN Go.
Meantime, our coverage continues right now with "AC360".