Return to Transcripts main page
ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Clinton Makes First Appearance since Concession Speech; Trump Denies Turmoil: "It is Going So Smoothly"; SC Governor Meets with Trump Thursday; Sins of the Father, Son's Revenge?; Trump Announces New Rules for Lobbyists; Global Uncertainty Surrounds President-Elect; Breitbart Radio Clips Reveal Trump's Relationship with Bannon; Unprecedented: Inside the Trump Campaign Airs Thursday at 9PM. Aired 9-10p ET
Aired November 16, 2016 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[21:00:00] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: If you're joining us right now, at the top of the hour, Hillary Clinton has just finished talking for the first time since her concession speech last Wednesday about her defeat. She spoke in front of old and dear friends, talked to members of the Children's Defense Fund in Washington. Our Joe Johns is there as well. He joins us now.
Joe, so, what did she talk about?
JOE JOHNS, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Well, going back to her roots really, Anderson. The Children's Defense Fund and Hillary Clinton go all the way back to 1973. This happens to be the same place that Bill Clinton gave his first speech after he was elected, Hillary Clinton said tonight.
So her remarks intended to be encouraging, never once actually uttered the name of Donald Trump. But among the things she said, that she could admit, this was not the easiest thing. She wanted to curl up and not come out. And then she said this. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, (D) FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I know many of you are deeply disappointed about the results of the election. I am, too, more than I can ever express. But as I said last week, our campaign was never about one person or even one election. It was about the country we love and about building an America that is hopeful, inclusive and big hearted.
I ask you to stay engaged, stay engaged on every level. We need you. America needs you, your energy, your ambition, your talent. That's how we get through this. That's how we help to make our contributions to bend the arc of the moral universe toward justice.
I know this isn't easy. I know that over the past week, a lot of people have asked themselves whether America is the country we thought it was. The divisions laid bare by this election run deep. But please, listen to me when I say this. America is worth it. Our children are worth it. Believe in our country, fight for our values and never, ever give up. (END VIDEO CLIP)
JOHNS: Hillary Clinton agreed to give this appearance before the Children's Defense Fund here at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. even before the election and still though, Anderson, this is her first public remarks since that painful concession speech at the New Yorker Hotel the day after the election.
COOPER: So this was something she had already planned. So even if she had become president, she would have still appeared at this event. And she pointed out tonight that I think this was event the first one that she and her husband Bill Clinton went to after he was actually elected.
JOHNS: Right. So if she had won the election, it would have certainly been an echo of something that happened all the way back in the early '90s right after Bill Clinton was elected, but it wasn't meant to be. Instead, this is more or less a swan song. Also, an attempt on encourage her supporters in spite of that election where I think she told you there that many people she has spoken to are pretty much crest fallen on Hillary Clinton side.
COOPER: Yeah, Joe Johns. Joe, thanks very much.
Now, Donald Trump's transition, it's going so smoothly, just ask him, whether from his own Twitter fingers or his spokesman's mouth. That has been the message all day. Yet all day, we've continued to see signs that however else who might describe it making sure the Obama/Trump handover goes well, is not yet running smoothly. Jim Acosta leads it off for us from outside Trump Tower.
So what do we know now about the transition?
JIM ACOSTA, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, we do have a little of breaking news to pass on. In just the last few moments, we were able to confirm with a transition official that Nikki Haley, the governor of South Carolina, she's going to be meeting with Donald Trump tomorrow here at Trump Tower, along with other officials here.
But I can tell you, Anderson, that Governor Haley is under consideration for the position of Secretary of State as well as other important Cabinet positions. That is something we're learning.
In just the last few moments, Donald Trump met with a number of critical potential Cabinet appointees earlier today. He met with -- in addition to that, General Mike Flynn, the retired general who was a part of Donald Trump's campaign. He is apparently under consideration for national security adviser. That is also something that was discussed.
And what we're hearing from the Trump transition, Anderson, they held a conference call earlier this evening and they said during that call, that the transition is starting to deploy what they call these landing teams at various agencies and departments around the federal government critically tomorrow. One thing that has to take place, hasn't taking place yet, is they're going to have these landing teams of various officials arriving at national security agencies and departments of the federal government. So that is something that's starting to move forward as part of the Trump transition.
[21:05:00] Now, you know, one thing that we did hear from Donald Trump earlier today, we saw those tweets, he said, you know, this process is going along smoothly. There were some bumps. One report we did hear was that Jared Kushner, Donald Trump's son-in-law was working behind the scenes inside the Trump transition trying to route out people who are loyal to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who was a head of that transition, now it's Vice President-elect Mike Pence. As some sort, he was motivated as some sort of revenge mission.
But I'm told by a transition source, they're pushing back very strongly on that saying that Jared Kushner was not doing that. So, you can see that they're starting to put the puzzle pieces into place, Anderson. They got sort of to a late start because they weren't expecting to win that election a week ago tonight, but they feel like they're starting to move things forward.
He's also meeting with the former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. Other officials, top officials here at Trump Tower tomorrow, Anderson.
COOPER: All right, Jim, appreciate the update. As we've -- we and others have been reporting for days now, sources say that much of the transition turmoil that Jim Acosta says maybe lifting close from Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner, now, he reportedly has overseen Chris Christie's outskirts transition chief along with the strain Christie hires, as Jim mentioned, the Trump campaign is now pushing back on that, including acknowledge experts in the field including former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers. There have been a variety of policy reasons floated for all of this. At the same time, there's another motivation and might be downright Shakespearean. As our Randi Kaye reports, Chris Christie once sent Jared Kushner's father to prison.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Charles Kushner built a billion dollar real estate empire, New Jersey based Kushner Companies. But in 2004, he became the focus of a federal investigation, charged in a bizarre attempt to silence a federal witness. It all stemmed from an accusation that Kushner had been making campaign contributions using names of his employees so he could skirt the federal contribution limits. What makes this so interesting is that the man prosecuting Kushner was then U.S. attorney for New Jersey, Chris Christie.
CHRIS CHRISTIE, U.S. ATTORNEY FOR NEW JERSEY: That investigation has surrounded potential charges of federal criminal tax violations and violations of the federal campaign contribution laws.
KAYE: But there is of course a different and almost Shakespearean dynamic with Chris Christie and the Kushner family now. Charles Kushner's son is Jared, married to Ivanka Trump and now one of the President-elect's closest advisers. Charles Kushner, a Democrat, often donated to Democratic candidates. And in 2002, his brother and his accountant filed lawsuits against Kushner alleging financial irregularities, accusing Kushner of evading federal limits on campaign contributions.
Kushner struck a deal agreeing to pay more than $500,000 in fines to the Federal Election Commission. He admitted using the names of employees for campaign contributions. Kushner also said he defrauded the IRS by claiming charitable contributions as business expenses.
In the course of that investigation, Chris Christie's team discovered something else. That Charles Kushner had attempted to blackmail a federal witness using a prostitute as bait.
CHRISTIE: When people under investigation decide to take the law into their own hands, to obstruct justice, to attempt to impede the rule of law, it is our obligation to act swiftly and surely to end the obstruction.
KAYE: Christie charged Kushner with conspiring to obstruct the grand jury investigation. It turns out Kushner hired a prostitute to have sex with his brother-in-law since he was cooperating with investigators looking into the campaign contributions. Kushner had the sexual encounter video taped and sent that tape to the man's wife, Kushner's sister.
CHRISTIE: He undertook this activity in order to gain leverage over the cooperating witnesses.
KAYE: Kushner pleaded guilty and was sentenced to two years in prison. He served one year behind bars before being sent to a halfway house. He was released in 2006. Years ago his son Jared told New York magazine about his dad, his siblings stole every piece of paper from his office and they took it the government. All he did was put the tape together and send it. Today, Jared Kushner clearly hasn't forgotten the man who put his father behind bars was Chris Christie and now he's exacting his revenge.
Randi Kaye, CNN, New York.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: A fascinating back story.
Back with the panel now. Monica, how much of that past do you think has been resolved between them because obviously they were, Christie and Kushner, were working together all through this campaign?
MONICA LANGLEY, SENIOR SPECIAL WRITER, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL: They were. I've been told that they clearly have a complicated relationship, but they put it behind them for the good of Donald Trump's campaign. I mean, Kushner appreciated that Christie came out first for Donald Trump as the rival. And, you know, a lot of people have joked about Christie coming out and kind of doing so, so publicly. You know ...
[21:10:08] COOPER: There has been clearly a purging of Christie from the transition and ...
LANGLEY: This is true. This is very true. And so I really gotten into the reporting of it to find out what's happened and how involved has Jared Kushner been? My sources tell me that it has been a lot less Jared Kushner and much more people wanting Christie out after Bridgegate. That it was much more a fact that some of Christie's staff was convicted of -- some of the staff members were convicted of, you know, causing the big tie-up of the bridge.
LANGLEY: So, you know, I do think there has been this, you know, very interesting past between them over his father. But I don't think it's motivated.
Now, one thing I did confirm is that Jared Kushner has been involved in the transition team in following his father-in-law's order which is no more D.C. hacks and Christie had put in there a lot of lobbyists. And so he doesn't want lobbyists in there. I don't know if it was -- I don't think it was as motivated for Christie people as it was for get the lobbyists out.
COOPER: And you have a story tonight about Jared Kushner mulling over a potential role in the White House, seriously mulling over ...
MAGGIE HABERMAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: That's right.
COOPER: You've also been reporting on this. We also now know, Nikki Haley coming tomorrow to Trump Tower, unclear exactly what role she would play.
HABERMAN: I think the Nikki Haley thing is very interesting to me because there was a tweet about floating Nikki Haley as a Secretary of State possibility. This is after Rudy Giuliani was described by all of us as the frontrunner, as the clear lead. That's what I had certainly been told by sources in the transition, by people close to Giuliani. Giuliani has essentially been telling people that he all but has this based on my reporting. I had to wonder when I saw this about Nikki Haley who did not support Trump was pretty critical of him during primaries. She supported Marco Rubio. I wondered whether Trump had gotten frustrated seeing Giuliani floated so strongly. Trump, as we know, has told several people that he's keeping his own list of transition names that people shouldn't believe everything they're reading.
HABERMAN: So -- or finalists as he tweeted. But he has said this privately that he will collect names from his children, that he's got his own list, don't believe what you're reading. I think that Trump likes to feel in control of these things. And so even though in a transition you are sensibly assigning people to do this for you, I think that Trump likes creating his own process.
COOPER: Trump has also been pushing back on your report in "New York Times", reporting about conflict within the transition team? HABERMAN: You could have just stopped the sentence, pushing back on the "New York Times". But, yeah, I mean, because that's just been (inaudible). He spent a lot of the day doing this -- look, I've been really struck by this conference call they just held earlier during our show that transition held a call saying, they'll do this lobbyist ban where anybody who comes in the administration will not be able to lobby for five years after.
COOPER: Which is actually a big deal. I mean in Washington, there's a revolving door, people ...
HABERMAN: Absolutely. It is not only a big deal, it's consistent with the drain the swamp message ...
HABERMAN: ... which is really, I think, what helped him get elected toward the end there. It ties your hands a little bit in certain respects in terms of -- as Monica was saying, getting rid of these lobbyists and that was a real thing in terms of the transition team.
But I have been very struck by how sort of on their heels for the last eight or nine days this transition has been. They have really not had a clear sense of what message they wanted to drive, what they wanted to say their priorities are. And I -- so I think that -- I understand that Trump is trying to get control of that now but we basically had three days of stories about Steve Bannon and then we had stories about transition chaos and they didn't really do a whole lot to try to grab hold of this and tell the country what they want to do. And that is really what this is supposed to be about.
COOPER: It does seem like in past transitions, and correct me if I'm wrong, Jeff, I mean, there is sort of more daily updates or much more of a sort of a public face to the transition?
JEFFREY LORD, TRUMP SUPPORTER: Yeah, sometimes that's true. I mean, I do think that this is Donald Trump and things are going to be done differently and -- to say the least. And what you've got here is a Washington establishment of both parties that does things in what I can attest is a very conventional fashion and set fashion. And he is, you know, in the drain the swamp mood, going to be very, very different. And that's -- this is going to come out in all kinds of ways from policy to process.
COOPER: And Andre, I mean, if they really do ban people from joining lobbying terms, for five years after, I mean, as I said, I mean, that's a major shift.
ANDRE BAUER, TRUMP SUPPORTER: That's fantastic for the American taxpayer. I call this the Donald Trump, the out of the beltway swagger. I mean, this guy is not going to conform. He is not going to worry about what the media says. And I'm glad they're not so worried about what the media is saying for the first few days and they're more focused on getting the people to go in there and make substantive change. COOPER: Trump -- the Trump team has also, while we were on the air, announced that they are going to have to start to have daily briefings, I think everyday at 10:30 a.m. and will take questions from reporters.
Maria, what do you make of this kind of no lobbyists after five years?
[21:14:59] MARIA CARDONA, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, you know, it's interesting because we pretend like we've never seen this before. Obama had the exact same policy when he came in. There were no lobbyists that were allowed to be considered for positions. You know, that changed somewhat. They had some exceptions here and there and then they were criticized for it. But that's nothing new. I think what you're going to see though now is, you know, hopefully -- I think what people are worried about is that it does really look like chaos.
You know, Jeffrey, you talked about how Trump loves doing things unconventionally. There is a reason why there is a procedure in terms of transition. It is a huge government. He's got to appoint more than 4,000people, right? These are processes and procedures. That is not just for convention for convention's sake, but there are legalities involved.
There was an issue, I think you reported this, that part of what the hold-up was, they couldn't get their act together to actually sign the memorandums that you needed to sign so that Obama's team could actually talk to the transition people on Trump's team. That worries people.
COOPER: The other question, Ana, the raise by the no lobbyist thing is -- I mean then does it sort of put into stark relief, somebody like Rudy Giuliani who has extensive business ties overseas who started, you know, as soon as he left office and, you know, continued up until recently?
ANA NAVARRO, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: I'm biased about Rudy Giuliani. I happen to like the guy a lot. I know him very well form cigar world, smoking cigars in South Florida. What he likes to do a hell out of all things. That being said, I think careful what you wish for because you just may get it.
And if Rudy, you know, even if he is Rudy, and even if so many Republican senators like him and know him, he's campaigned for him, he's going to have to go through the scrutiny that anybody nominated for a Cabinet position would. And he has a lot of lobbying past and record and foreign governments and it's going to be an issue, it's going to be a major issue for Democrats certainly. And I think even for some Republicans like Rand Paul.
COOPER: We're going to have more focused on that later on this hour. We'll also talk to CNN's Fareed Zakaria on how the rest of the world sees Donald Trump, why he may not doing much at the moment to reassure friends and allies, whether that's a bad thing or not, you can just decide.
Later, to Maggie Habberman's point, a fourth day of stories about Steve Bannon, we'll look at his relationship with Donald Trump and how Bannon has managed to get so close to the President-elect.
[21:20:41] COOPER: The breaking news, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley will meet with Donald Trump tomorrow in connection with the Secretary of State job or perhaps other Cabinet positions. It would certainly be an unconventional move, yet again little Trump has done so far has been strictly run-of-the-mill. He broach the idea of more Asian countries acquiring nuclear weapons left the fate of the NATO alliance in some doubt, talked about joining hands with Russia and Syria, his words have certainly caused a stir now as president-elect so as some of his actions. Here to talk about it, Fareed Zakaria, anchor of "GPS" airing weekends on CNN.
You know, it's interesting as Jim Acosta was reporting on and as "The New York Times" has reported as well, this idea that some allies are having a hard time kind of figuring out who to talk to, to get to talk to Donald Trump. And that -- you know, there was talk from somebody in Australia kind of using a cell phone that somebody had on a golf course. It's certainly an odd situation.
FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN HOST, FAREED ZAKARIA GPS: It's unconventional as you pointed out like everything he's done. I don't think one should make too much of the process issue. Look, he is, you know, he clearly is somebody who doesn't have a background in government, doesn't really know how this process works.
COOPER: And may not have expected to actually be ...
ZAKARIA: And may not have expected to win and therefore does not have a clear transition structure in place. That will, you know, work itself out. I think what's more worrying to certainly the people I've been talking to abroad is just what would he stand for? You know, you have this very odd situation where the president of the free world, leading democracy has been elected. And the people who seem ecstatic are Bashar al-Assad in Syria who says, you know, this -- Trump will be natural ally, the Hungarian president who is a, you know, very illiberal populist nationalist, the government in Poland which has been trying shut down or close media and independence of the judiciary in various ways. Robert Mugabe and his government made a statement saying, well maybe, we'll be able to restore our relations with the United States.
COOPER: When Mugabe likes you, that's not a good ...
ZAKARIA: When Mugabe -- and the people who have been concerned have been Germany, France. You know, it's been very interesting to watch how the United States's closest allies have real concerns and consternations. And some of the really unsavory elements on the international scene are celebrating. I think Trump can fix this but it's a warning.
COOPER: It's also interesting how Donald Trump sees -- I mean, the way he's talked about a lot of the relationships is sort of transactional as opposed to necessarily from a -- at first a national security standpoint or a historic standpoint. It's about a deal. It's about -- we're not -- they're not paying enough. It's not an unfair situation.
ZAKARIA: You know, you put your finger on it, Anderson. The people in Europe I've talked to, particularly Eastern Europe, say exactly that. They say it seems like the president of the United States views the western alliance as a series of transactions. The way we view it is an alliance based on shared values, shared interests, shared commitments. And for us, it's an insurance policy.
A former very senior official in Poland said to me, you know, all country lost its independence twice. We will wiped off the map because of the Russian and German invasions. And so for us, our security is guaranteed by the words of the American president. That's what deters Russia. Russia has a much larger army than Poland. They could cross that border very easily.
What deters them is the sense that the west will be united and that sense of unity and kind of steadfastness has traditionally come from the president of the United States. It's very interesting to see how Merkel responded, the chancellor of Germany, to the election. She said, you know, this is great as long as it is about shared Democratic, you know, liberal Democratic values. In other words, what she was saying is if you're going to be the leader of a free liberal Democratic world, we're delighted, you know, to be partners, but that's the criteria.
COOPER: Well, there's also got to be consternations -- there's Brexit and then Donald Trump, I mean, for some of this letters (ph) from Merkel certainly there's, you know, she's admitted as many as million migrants into the country and lot of realms in Germany, that's not a popular thing. You're seeing the rise of the right in France as well. So, the notion of this quest for change is not something has just stopped after Brexit and Donald Trump.
[21:25:08] ZAKARIA: And that this reaction to migration, which is at the heart of it, could kind of unravel the entire western project as it were. You know, after World War II, the United States helped to build this very stable order in the western world that has produced peace and prosperity. People forget, you know, friends in Germany went to war three times in the preceding 75 years before 1945.
So that's all been put to an end because the United States imposed a kind of, you know, liberal order, small liberal conservative.
ZAKARIA: And I think they're all worried that if Trump is a signal ...
ZAKARIA: ... and if you then have upend the nationalist far right party in France winning the French presidency and these parties are very nationalist. They say we don't want any part of Europe, we don't want to be part of the western alliance. You will have an unraveling of this whole order that was built after 1945. And the Europeans particularly look at it as one of the most cherished creations. COOPER: Yeah.
ZAKARIA: This is something that has preserved peace and prosperity and has allowed people to not worry about the kind of wars that used to go on all the time. So, it's all these kinds of things that I think Trump needs to worry more about. The personnel and who's ...
ZAKARIA: ... that's much less important.
COOPER: All right, Fareed Zakaria. Fareed, thanks very much.
Much more breaking news, Senator Bernie Sanders blasting Steve Bannon tonight, calling on President-elect Trump to revoke his appointment as chief White House strategist. Plus, the radio interview that reveal how Bannon may have flattered his way into Donald Trump's inner circle and shaped his policies.
[21:30:36] COOPER: More breaking news tonight, Senator Bernie Sanders adding his voice to a growing course, calling on President-elect Trump to cut ties with Steve Bannon, he's newly appointed chief White House strategist. Here's what Sanders said tonight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS, (I) VERMONT: I call upon Mr. Trump to rescind the appointment that he made of Mr. Bannon. A president of the United States should not have a racist at his side. Unacceptable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: The man who sparked the backlash was chief executive Trump's campaign. And before the that, head of the conservative website Breitbart News. Bannon himself has called Breitbart a platform for the alt-right, a movement associated with white nationalism. Tonight there's a new window on Trump and Bannon's close relationship and how it was actually forged. The "Washington Post" has analyzed nine interviews that Trump did on Bannon's radio show before Bannon joined the campaign. He was an early supporter when Trump still seemed like a long shot. This clip is from last November.
STEVE BANNON, EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, BREITBART NEWS: We were telling people at the time, I said, "Look, this guy is people are leaning forward in these audiences when he was talking," and of course we were mocked and ridiculed and, you know, "What are you guys doing? This is a joke." In fact, the Sunday show, Tom Rose and Gary Bauer tell the story of how they were laughing at me when I was saying, "Hey, this guy Trump is going to be very serious," so it's good to see that you're in the heat of combat now.
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, you know, I remember that well, and oftentimes with you, especially because I'd always mess up my hair when I put those big microphones around. You know, you'd always help me put them on. So, I'd mess up my hair, which is fine. But I remember that you looked and you said, "Boy those are big crowds you're getting. You have more than anybody else by far."
COOPER: David Fahrenthold, of the "Washington Post" joins me now.
So, David, these interviews that you've been going through with Trump and Steve Bannon, they are really fascinating. I mean, you really do kind of see a breakdown of how Donald Trump operates behind closed doors and how he responds to particularly some compliments, I mean, even just very basic things about like the size of his crowds or his poll numbers.
DAVID FAHRENTHOLD, REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: Yes, that's right. And Bannon often begins these interviews by complementing -- you said his poll numbers or his negotiating skills. I know you're a great negotiator. In one case he said, "I know you're a great student of military history," or "I know you're very strong, tough guy, you deal with the toughest people." That someone we've also seen Howard Stern do it for a long time in interviews with Trump. It's a good way to get Trump talking and to ingratiate yourself with him. It works with him better than those seen (ph) with most people.
COOPER: Well, in fact, I remember during the, you know, early days in the primary about -- when I interviewed Trump and a number of other people would as well. He would -- if they didn't start off by asking or pointing out the poll numbers or pointing out the crowds, he would actually get annoyed by that and he would be the one to bring up the poll numbers or if you started -- I remember I once started out by asking about a latest poll number which wasn't quite as good as a poll number that had come out earlier in that day and he pointed that out, that I was focusing on this newer number as opposed to the better number.
FAHRENTHOLD: That's right. You see in these conversations, what we've seen for Trump for a long time that he values affirmation and sort of constant affirmation. And that -- I think we see sort of -- in these radio interviews, they were done over the air, but you can see the way that Bannon influences Trump behind the scenes. He begins with that affirmation of Trump's success, with his personal qualities, his strengths, his negotiation skills. He knows the things that Trump values in his own self-image and he plays those up to sort of open the conversation.
COOPER: I mean, one of the things I've said that I enjoy -- I mean, I enjoyed interviewing Donald Trump, I like to give and take with him and I also like the fact that he, a, sits down for interviews, did early on and answers questions, unlike a lot of politicians who, you know, answer the question that they wish you would asked them as opposed to, you know, you can ask me a hypothetical and he'll go for it, sometimes he probably shouldn't, but I think I have to credited him for that. But I want to play another piece of sound from one of the interviews in which Bannon asked Trump about his statements on closing down mosques after the Paris attacks in 2015. Let's listen.
BANNON: You got a lot of blowback the other day from saying hey you may have to go in and shut down some mosques. Were you actually saying you need a NYPD intelligence unit to get a network of informants?
TRUMP: At a minimum, at a minimum. I want that at a minimum. We have to start that back up again in New York City and elsewhere.
BANNON: I guess what I'm saying is, you're not prepared to allow an enemy within, to try to tear down this country?
TRUMP: That's right. That's not going to happen. Let me tell you something, if I'm president it's not going to happen.
COOPER: And -- I mean, as you point out, it seems that Bannon is so much sort of giving him the answer in asking the question, coaching him on policy and kind of in real-time, which we've seen some other interviewers do as well.
[21:35:06] FAHRENTHOLD: That's right. You can see in several instances Bannon recognizes that Trump has said something that is impolitic even for Trump. It's going to get Trump in trouble. And he tries to steer Trump toward the right outcome, toward the more palatable outcome. And that this is the most extreme case. Trump had said on "Hannity Tonight" before, you have to shut down some mosques and his -- so the Bannon's question is why did you really mean to shut down some mosques or did you really mean is other more (inaudible) thing.
And there's a couple other instances. One, he asks Trump about Turkey. Could he take on Erdogan in Turkey? And Trump says, well, I've got a conflict of interest. I got two big towers in Istanbul. I'm worried about those. And then you could see Bannon being like well, did you really mean you have a conflict of interest?
FAHRENTHOLD: Can you reassure us that you don't have a conflict of interest? He is telling Trump what it would be better for Trump to say.
COOPER: I always think back to the Chris Matthews interview where Chris Matthews gave Trump about abortion. Chris Matthews gave Trump -- he said, you know, you don't think there should be abortion, should be legal or should be up to the states? Do you think women should be punished who have an abortion?
I always think that if Chris Matthews had given him the option of or should doctors be punished, Trump would have instinctively gone for doctors, but because Matthews didn't even raise that as a possibility, he just sort of latched on to the one thing that Matthews gave him which is punish women. And I think I wonder if in a Bannon interview, if he had, you know, he sort of tosses him a life line in asking the question, I think it's fascinating to actually break it down as you have.
FAHRENTHOLD: It's right. And there are some cases in which he frames an issue sort of an odd and arbitrary way. In one case he says, well, do you really think we should fight climate change or should we fight ISIS? You know, I don't think anybody think that those are ...
COOPER: Either/or? Right.
FAHRENTHOLD: Yeah, and that's a binary choice, one or the other. And the way he sets it up, Trump of course says, well, you know, climate change is really just weather. We should fight ISIS. It's an interesting insight in a way that Bannon or anybody else could frame these questions for Trump. (Inaudible) with a lot of knowledge or preexisting opinions.
COOPER: Dave Fahrenthold, appreciate you being with us. Thanks very much.
FAHRENTHOLD: Thank you.
COOPER: Just ahead, given the Nikki Haley breaking news, potential Secretary of State, Rudy Giuliani in the red flags that may keep him from getting the job offer.
[21:40:57] COOPER: One of the breaking news tonight, South Carolina Government Nikki Haley under consideration for Secretary of State, so as former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani. The question is will his considerable success in the business world keep him out of the Cabinet? Our senior investigative correspondent Drew Griffin tonight has more.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DREW GRIFFIN, CNN SENIOR INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: Rudy Giuliani wants to be Secretary of State and Rudy Giuliani thinks he is better than the other choices. Yes. Someone asked.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there anybody better?
RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: Maybe me. I don't know.
GRIFFIN: He is direct. He is an unabashed supporter of Donald Trump and not afraid to repeat and even double down on the kind of rhetoric that left no doubt where the President-elect stands on the issues.
GIULIANI: Islamic extremist terrorism. You know who you are. And we're coming to get you.
GRIFFIN: Giuliani's temperament for the job is coming into question. But so are his many business ties across the globe. Though not a direct comparison, because Rudy Giuliani was a private citizen, they are the same kinds of ties that Rudy Giuliani found problematic when he labeled the Clinton Foundation and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as engaging in a pay-to-play scheme run out of the Department of State.
GIULIANI: The Clinton Foundation to me is a racketeering enterprise.
Turning the State Department into a pay-for-play operation.
GRIFFIN: He rose to national prominence on September 11, 2001, became known as America's mayor. But that fame failed to catapult him into a higher political office despite running for president in 2008. What it did do was make Rudy Giuliani rich. He traveled the globe making big dollar speeches, gaining security consulting contracts with foreign governments and foreign entities, including some countries that aren't always on the best of terms with the U.S. The list of clients and countries spread from Europe to the Middle East to Central and South America, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Colombia.
His law firm even represented Citgo, the U.S. subsidiary of Venezuela's government-owned oil company. It adds up to a tremendous amount of experience making money overseas. But his political experience is still limited to an American mayor, says David Rothkopf with Foreign Policy Magazine.
DAVID ROTHKOPF, CEO AND EDITOR, FOREIGN POLICY MAGAZINE: He was a pretty good mayor of New York City, but he has no foreign policy experience. And furthermore, his experience as mayor and what he has done since has raised some serious questions.
GRIFFIN: Like his support and acceptance of money from an exiled Iranian group once considered a terrorist organization. The Mujahideen-e Khalq or MEK, as its known, has gotten support from both Democrats and Republicans over the years, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton actually removed the group from the State Department's list terror organizations. But Rudy Giuliani took money from the group and that could be raised as a conflict of interest.
JEREMIAH GOULKA, AUTHOR: Their interest is using the U.S. to overthrow Iranian regime. And if he is continuing to take them seriously, whether it was because he was paid by them or because he actually just thinks they have good ideas, that's extremely dangerous for American policy.
GRIFFIN: But the bigger issue critics worry about is Giuliani's temperament. On the campaign trail, Giuliani would say almost anything. On voter fraud, he said ...
GIULIANI: Dead people generally vote for Democrats.
GRIFFIN: On Trump's economy, he said ...
GIULIANI: Don't you think a man who has this kind of economic genius is a lot better than the United States than a woman?
GRIFFIN: And referring to Clinton herself, he said ...
GIULIANI: And the only thing she has ever produced is a lot of work for the FBI checking out her e-mails.
GRIFFIN: Yes, a good campaign surrogate, but is that the temperament needed of a Secretary of State?
ROTHKOPF: One of the reasons Rudy Giuliani is popular is he is direct like Donald Trump. One of the reasons I think Donald Trump likes the idea of Rudy Giuliani as Secretary of State is, you will get a foreign policy that looks like Donald Trump. It will be loud, it will be direct, it will be in your face. But it will also be like Donald Trump, inexperienced, compromised by prior business ties and comes with a lot of prejudices.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[21:45:05] COOPER: That was Drew Griffin reporting.
Now, the -- something completely different, story about Donald Trump in real estate, he won the battle for the White House but three luxury apartment buildings here in New York have lost his name. The move comes after a move by hundreds of residents in those buildings. Brynn Gingras reports.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Residents in three Manhattan apartment buildings voting against Trump and winning, thanks in part to a petition signed by hundreds of supporters. The luxurious New York City high rises are dumping the Trump name from the building exteriors.
Construction workers were seen removing the Trump Place letters and then carrying them into the building. At one address, the plywood covers the area where the letters used to be. At another, workers used a power washer to scrub away the dirt left behind. The rebranding is not only happening on the outside, says resident Jessica Purnell.
JESSICA PURNELL, BUILDING RESIDENT: I saw the door men carrying out their new wardrobes, so like new uniforms that don't have the Trump symbol on it.
GINGRAS: Purnell said that she would have signed this petition titled the "Dump the Trump Name" had she known about it.
PURNELL: I think I would have just because I feel like it sort of goes hand in hand with my vote.
GINGRAS: The petition states, residents are "embarrassed to be living in a buildings with the name Trump Place blazoned in front." Robert Tessler is one of the petition's authors.
ROBERT TESSLER, PETITION CO-AUTHOR: He is a racist. He is anti- feminist. He is anti-immigrant. He is anti-almost everything except the one person and that's Donald Trump. And that's why it was so important to us who live in the building to have his name removed. GINGRAS: But as the street turned construction site attracted tourists taking pictures, there were some New Yorkers who scalawag (ph) at the site like this man who did not want to give us his name.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The election is over. We elected the next president of the United States and we should be patriotic. We should stand behind him.
GINGRAS: Workers are now replacing the Trump name with the street address. And when we reached out to the management company, pretty residential to ask about this name changed, they didn't get political at all. They basically said the contract between the firm and the Trump Organization simply ran out.
In a statement the company spokesman said, "Assuming a more neutral building identity will appeal to all current and future residents."
JONATHAN GREENMAN, NEW YORK CITY RESIDENT: They're just definitely trying to separate the political side from the business side.
GINGRAS: But the residents who signed the petition don't care about the reason as long as those golden letters are gone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: And Brynn joins us now from the Trump Tower here in New York. So, you've been in touch with other Trump run (ph) properties here in New York City, what are they telling you?
GINGRAS: Yeah, Anderson, there is a building that's actually neighboring those high rises, it still has the Trump name. And those letters aren't coming down because the Trump Organization still manages that building. That particular property is -- has homeowners. They own those apartments. And I talked to one of them today and she says that being identified with Trump in her opinion just lowers her property value. She thinks it's bad for her pocket book and she said she plans on taking that up with the building very soon. So, it's possible we may see some more letters coming down in the near future, Anderson.
COOPER: All right, Brynn, thanks very much.
Up next, why Donald Trump won bigger in one Texas county than any other nationwide?
[21:51:52] COOPER: On election night, Donald Trump continued a tradition in Texas as victory confirmed a 36 years streak of Republican presidential candidate winning the Lone Star State, started back in 1980 with Ronald Reagan's victory, this time around one county really went red. Gary Tuchman tonight reports.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Here in the Texas panhandle, in Roberts County, Donald Trump is very popular.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He stands for the working Americans and that's middle class and that's a lot of us.
TUCHMAN: Very, very popular.
LACEY SEYMOUR, TRUMP VOTER IN ROBERTS COUNTY, TX: I think he's just a true, honest man.
TUCHMAN: As a matter of fact, this could be considered the most pro- Trump county in America. 95.3 percent of voters here cast their ballots for Donald Trump, his highest percentage of any county in the nation.
Only 20 people in this tiny county voted for Hillary Clinton. This is the county seat, it's pronounced Miami.