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Pres. Obama Commutes Chelsea Manning's Sentence; Trump Renews Feud with Rep. Lewis; Interview with Congressman Don Beyer of Virginia; Orlando Police Capture Suspected Cop Killer; GOP Lawmakers Unaware Of Trump's Health Care Plan; Obamas Moving Into New DC Home; Small Business Owner Optimistic About Trump Presidency. Aired 8-9p ET

Aired January 17, 2017 - 20:00   ET


[20:00:15] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: And good evening from Washington. Thanks for joining us.

With just three days until his inauguration, the cloud of controversy surrounding Donald Trump is thickening. He arrived just a few moments ago at national airport for his first inaugural event, a dinner with the Washington diplomatic corps. We're awaiting his remarks and we'll bring them to you shortly as the tape comes in.

We begin, though, tonight with breaking news on perhaps the final controversy of the outgoing president's administration. Late today, President Obama used his constitutional power to grant executive clemency, commuting the sentence of Chelsea Manning. Now, three and a half years ago, a military judge sentenced Manning, then known as Army Private Bradley Manning, to a record 35 years for providing hundreds of thousands of government documents to WikiLeaks.

Details now on all of it from our justice correspondent, Pamela Brown.


PAMELA BROWN, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Tonight in a shocking move, President Obama is allowing Chelsea Manning, the Army private convicted of stealing and leaking hundreds of thousands of documents and videos to be a free woman in May.

The reaction on Capitol Hill and beyond has been swift.

SEN. TOM COTTON (R), ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE: For the president, especially a president who's made so much recently about the danger that WikiLeaks has posed to our national security, to commute Private Manning's sentence, I think it's very disappointing.

BROWN: In 2009, then known as Bradley Manning, stole hundreds of thousands of classified and sensitive military files as a 22-year-old Army intelligence analyst. He then gave them to the website WikiLeaks, which published the them, causing a massive ripple effect and the United States and around the world, and putting WikiLeaks on the map for future leakers, such as Edward Snowden.

Manning's disclosures included videos of U.S. airstrikes in Baghdad, that launched worldwide discussions about their morality. The stolen files also included embarrassing diplomatic cables. Manning confided in an online associate about the disclosures, who then alerted authorities in 2010.

During the court-martial trial, prosecutors argued Manning was a traitor to the United States, but the defense said Manning was a naive whistle-blower, who wanted to shed light on human rights violations. Manning pleaded guilty and delivered an apology to the court before the sentencing.

Manning was acquitted of aiding the enemy, but found guilty on 20 other counts, including violations under the Espionage Act, and sentenced to 35 years in prison.

The day after the sentencing, Manning announced she wanted to live life as a woman. And a year later, a judge granted Manning's request for a formal name change from Bradley to Chelsea.

Behind bars, Manning was placed on suicide watch, after trying to kill herself twice in the last year.

Tonight, the White House is defending Manning's sentence commutation, by drawing the distinction between Manning's case and Edward Snowden, who remains in exile.

JOSH EARNEST, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Chelsea Manning is somebody who went through the military criminal justice process, was exposed to due process, was found guilty, was sentenced for her crimes, and she acknowledged wrongdoing. Mr. Snowden fled into the arms of a refugee -- into the arms of an adversary and has sought refuge in a country that most recently made a concerted effort to undermine confidence in our democracy.


COOPER: Pamela Brown joins us now with more.

Was this really a surprise? Has the White House been signaling they might do this for a while?

BROWN: Well, it is a surprise, when you look back over President Obama's tenure in the White House. His administration has been very tough on government leaks. In fact, according to "The New York Times," the administration prosecuted such cases nine or ten of them, which is more than past presidents, combined.

And Chelsea Manning is someone who really played a pivotal role in making WikiLeaks what it is. And as we know, the administration has been very outspoken of the role it played in this past election.

But the White House, Anderson, has been setting the stage this week, signaling that perhaps there could be clemency granted to Chelsea Manning. We heard Josh Earnest there in the press conference today, before the announcement was made, laying the groundwork, basically making the case for this, saying that she pleaded guilty, that she apologized, and she has served time. And the White House also saying that Julian Assange's promise to turn

himself in if she was granted clemency played no role in this. Of course, Julian Assange is the founder of WikiLeaks -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right. Pamela Brown, thanks.

Let's bring in the panel, "INSIDE POLITICS" anchor John King, CNN political analysts, Gloria Borger and Carl Bernstein, chief national security correspondent Jim Sciutto joins us, so does CNN national security commentator and former House Intelligence Committee chairman, Mike Rogers, Trump supporter, "American Spectator" contributor, Jeffrey Lord, is here, along with former Congressional Black Caucus executive director, Angela Rye, and conservative writer, Matt Lewis, who's now at "The Daily Beast".

[20:05:04] John, I mean, to the point that was just made, I mean, this is a big departure for President Obama, given how tough his administration has been on folks who leaked.

JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: And you see condemnation now across the spectrum. You see a more private, Chairman Rogers, probably had more of this than I do. But from people in the military and intelligence community who feel let down by this, anyway, but especially given the big debate the country is going through right now about Russian hacking.

I would just say this -- when these happen late in the administration, when they happen, if there's a bunch of them, there's always a head scratcher. I remember standing in front of the White House on the last day of Bill Clinton's administration when he pardoned Marc Rich. And word came out at the last minute, and everybody was stunned, because -- then everybody said it was Washington greasing the skids. They looked at who were the lawyers involved, their connections to the White House, and off we went.

Just look at the criticism. Now, these people aren't fans of President Obama to begin, but want to hear from Republicans, John McCain, Tom Cotton, the conservative hawkish senators. But also, Bob Menendez, the ranking Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee saying, what kind of signal does this send to whistle-blowers, to leakers, and in the middle of the environment we're in right now, where we have a Senate Intelligence Committee investigation of the Russian hacking?

So, as I said, when these happen at the end of an administration, and there's a long list of them, there's usually one that leaves you scratching your head.

COOPER: Gloria, do you buy the distinction the White House seems to be making between him -- between Chelsea Manning, her and Snowden?

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: They're trying to make a distinction. I don't buy it. They're saying that, you know, they're -- and I talked to somebody familiar with the White House thinking on this, saying that this doesn't set a precedent, because the distinction between the two of them is so material here, that they have nothing in common.

In fact, they do have something in common. They both leaked documents. I mean, you know, Chelsea Manning is the person who gave birth to WikiLeaks, essentially. And this is what this White House has been fighting.

In reading between the lines and talking to people who understand the president's thinking on this, I also think that there is a humanitarian side to this decision, and I'm sure we'll hear more from the president --

COOPER: You mean the fact that she's transgendered, the fact that she had attempted suicide twice?

BORGER: And the fact that she is in a male prison. You can ask the question, why not transfer her to another prison? But I was told that she is facing an uncertain fate behind bars.

I will also say that I asked the question, is there some deal with Assange here? That perhaps he would return for prosecution? He tweeted that that might be a possibility, if Chelsea Manning or the sentence were commuted.

And my source said, no.

COOPER: Jim, do you think this affects -- Assange did make this promise. I'll return if Chelsea Manning was released.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, listen, he released a statement tonight, there's no mention of him returning here for extradition. I mean, keep in mind, he's been holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy for four years expressly to avoid extradition to Sweden on these allegations of sexual assault because his fear, at least his expressed fear, was if I go there, then I'll be extradited to the U.S.

So, if he does, fantastic. But it remains to be seen if he follows through on that.

I would just echo Gloria's point here that, you know, Chelsea Manning put WikiLeaks on the map. I mean, this exposed -- let's remember, it was the diplomatic cables. Thousands of private communications that exposed private conversations, not just of U.S. diplomats abroad, but also foreign diplomats abroad, who were confiding in U.S. diplomats and has, you know, the result of that was them kind of feeling like, can I really talk to American diplomat if this is going to be exposed?

But then what became known as the "Iraq war diaries" -- I mean, thousands of documents that it's the view in fact defense community, intelligence community, put not only U.S. soldiers at risk, but U.S. confidential sources abroad at risk as well. So --

COOPER: Right. They say that, but then also Bob Gates I think in 2010 said that it was kind of overwrought, some of the rhetoric that was being used to describe the damage that was done. And I think "Reuters" reported it in 2011, that there was an interior State Department review that showed not as much damage, essentially, people were -- diplomats, if we talk to Chairman Rogers more about this, that diplomats were perhaps less likely to share information with the U.S., but they couldn't point to anybody who had lost their life.

SCIUTTO: Well, here's the thing, exactly that point, because a lot of -- and you heard that today, Lindsey Grahams of the world saying, he stabbed soldiers in the back. You know, this claim, could anyone trace to an American life lost abroad or a confidential source life lost abroad? No. And listen, that's a key point. You'll hear that from the WikiLeaks camp.

But did it expose communications or expose information that might have led people to those people? I mean, you know, you can make that judgment. But from the view of the folks in the field, when they look at this, the soldiers and intelligence agents who go through great risks, they don't have a question.

MIKE ROGERS (R), FORMER HOUSE INTELLIGENCE CMTE. CHAIRMAN: There's not enough adjectives I certainly can't say it even here on cable TV how I feel about this decision. I lived through this as chairman in -- I assumed the chairmanship in 2010 and saw what those reports were about what was compromised.

[20:10:05] Remember, you know, they talk about the top line things. Even the cables, which I thought were bad, and we saw physical impact of that, with diplomatic relations subsequent to that, but he stole something -- or released -- stole and then released 250,000 files on Iraq.

So, it wasn't just the top line items. There were reports about how we do things. There were reports, even, they would argue, well, the names of the individuals may have not been disclosed who were cooperating with U.S. forces.

You read that report and you're from there area and you're an intelligence official for the bad guys, guess what? You're going to figure out who that person was. And so, we saw that operations had to be changed. We saw changes on the ground as a result.

This is why you don't allow a private in the United States military to make a decision about what is disclosable and what is not disclosable. It's dangerous. I do believe it contributed to the loss of life in Iraq, and I do believe it cost us problems in our diplomatic relations around the world.

And then releasing the files at Gitmo only show what had we knew about relationships with people at Gitmo. Remember, if you read it and you're not in the intelligence business, you go, oh, that's not all that interesting. If you're in the counterintelligence business, what you read is, aha, now we know what we have to change for what is disclosed in the assessment of that person in Gitmo.

This is dangerous, dangerous stuff. He should have served every day of that 35 years.

COOPER: Carl? CARL BERNSTEIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, first I think we need to

look at the fact that it's a commutation, it's not a pardon. So, it in no way excuses what Manning did or nor has she attempted to excuse what she did. And I think as Gloria said, there is a humane aspect of this.

Look, the Obama policies about leaks have been draconian. They've been an assault on the First Amendment, and at the same time, what she did, there is no question about the seriousness of it. But we also have the example of General Petraeus, which is a line that is drawn that makes all of these cases so difficult to give weight to, equal weight, because what Petraeus did was awful. And he got a slap on the wrist.

So, there is no constancy in any of this. There's no good answers here.

COOPER: Talking about constancy, I mean, Jeff Lord, it's interesting, now you have some folks on the Republican side and supporters of Donald Trump and -- praising WikiLeaks. Donald Trump has talked a lot about WikiLeaks during the campaign. Chelsea Manning is the one who put WikiLeaks on the map.

Can you -- can you be in favor of WikiLeaks and praising them with -- on one side, and then, you know, critical of Chelsea Manning?

JEFFREY LORD, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I mean, to me, the whole business is about leaks in the first place. And let's just remember that this, this particular situation today, with Chelsea Manning, comes in the middle of all of this furor with Donald Trump and the intelligence community, accusing the intelligence community of leaking.

And here, all this does is elevate and say, this is how it can work. Here is one person, an army private, who gave this stuff to WikiLeaks. I mean, it could have been "The Washington Post." I mean, it could have been any number of media sources.

The point is, what this does is highlight Donald Trump's complaint, exactly.

MATT LEWIS, THE DAILY BEAST: But it's also -- it also speaks to the new world that we have, where if you gave it to "The Washington Post," they would hopefully presumably vet it. They would decide what to release and what not to release.

But, this speaks to the BuzzFeed story, right? When you have a data dump --

LORD: Shovel it out.

LEWIS: And just shovel it out. And what we have created as a situation where a low-level intelligence analyst gets to decide for the good of America to be a whistle-blower. But --

LORD: Daniel Ellsberg -- LEWIS: But the ability to discern the damage that could be done.

ANGELA RYE, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I take issue -- I take issue with this from a different, from a different standpoint, Gloria, to get back to your point about the humanitarian side of this. I think this is a really good example for the Obama legacy, the Obama administration legacy to demonstrate the inhumane treatment people receive in prison. Whether they're female in prison or male in prison, there are some severe challenges.

I think the other interesting thing, so on another side, I'm criticizing the president on this, there are so many examples of political prisoners. And this is an interesting case, an interesting one for him to kind of harness the collective power of millennials, who support Chelsea Manning. But there are others like Assata Shakur, and I'm interested to know why that wasn't a consideration, totally different situation. It's not about WikiLeaks, it's not about leaking documents, but it's one that has everything to do with political prisoners. I'm fascinating to know why --

COOPER: Chairman Rogers, (INAUDIBLE) then we have to take a quick break.

ROGERS: Well, he was -- first of all, he wasn't even an analyst. He was an IT systems guy who was an analyst, who didn't even understand what he stole, 750,000, not pages, but files.

And so, when you just make any excuse for someone saying, well, I believe what in here may or may not be bad, you completely disrupt the entire system of keeping classified information classified.

[20:15:04] And it's classified for a reason, in cases like this, to keep people safe on the battlefield.

The other piece of this, Assange, in the last couple of days, shout out a tweet that said, hey, if you want to promote more leaks like this, Democrats, then you should fight for a pardon for Chelsea Manning.

Now, I don't believe that the two are tied together, but it shows you the danger of kind of walking in, even to the perception that, hey, it's OK if I do this. You know, some president somewhere is going to see it my way in the future.

COOPER: All right.

ROGERS: Thirty-five years, he should have done every day of it.

COOPER: We have a lot more to talk about ahead. Plus, Donald Trump's remarks.

Also, just three days from his inauguration, a new CNN/ORC poll showing his approval ratings are falling. This as dozens of Democrats said they plan to skip the inauguration. Congressman Don Beyer of Virginia has been candid about why he is boycotting the ceremony. I'll talk to him ahead. And the president-elect has just responded to the news of the boycott,

so you'll hear that, as well.

And later, when it is inauguration day, it's also moving day. The Obamas moving out, Trump moving into the White House. We'll show you how that all plays out.


COOPER: More breaking news as we wait to hear from President-elect Donald Trump. He's making comments tonight. He's adding new fuel to his dustup with congressman and civil rights icon, John Lewis, who he's attacked on Twitter after Lewis called Trump's election illegitimate. Lewis is boycotting Donald Trump's inauguration, along with now dozens of other Democratic lawmakers, many of them spared by Trump's attacks on Lewis.

In an interview on FOX News tonight, Donald Trump slammed Lewis again for mistakenly saying he's never missed an inauguration before, when, in fact, he also skipped George W. Bush's swearing in ceremony. Here's what Mr. Trump said.


DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT-ELECT: I think for him to have grandstanded, because I think he just grandstanded, John Lewis, and then he got caught in a very bad lie. So, let's see what happens. As far as other people not going, that's OK, because we need seats so badly. I hope they give me their tickets.

Are they going to give us their ticket? Or are they going to give them to other people?

INTERVIEWER: You're OK with them not going?

TRUMP: No, what happens to their tickets? I hope they're going to give us their tickets.


COOPER: Meantime, Donald Trump's approval ratings are falling, according to a new CNN/ORC poll. Donald Trump will become the nation's 45th president on Friday, with an approval rating of just 40 percent.

[20:20:03] That's the lowest of any recent president and 44 points below President Obama's approval rating in 2009.

Trump is dismissing, we should point out, his low approval ratings in recent polls as phony and rigged.

Congressman Don Beyer of Virginia is skipping the inauguration. He joins us now.

Congressman, thanks so much.

REP. DON BEYER (D), VIRGINIA: Yes, thank you.

COOPER: Why skip the inauguration? I mean, if Hillary Clinton had been elected and Republican congressmen were skipping the inauguration, Democrats would be up in arms.

BEYER: Well, I don't know. There are many, many Republican congressmen who skipped Obama's first and second inauguration. They just didn't make many statements about it.

And for me, it was a tough decision because I definitely respect the peaceful transition of power, I treasure that, and especially respect the prerogatives of the presidency. But this candidate has done so many things whose -- the constant lying, the interference with Russia, the mocking of those with disabilities, the profound disrespect for women. I just couldn't be there to celebrate his inauguration.

I'll be there for the State of the Union Address. That's his presentation to Congress. I'm a member of Congress. But I really don't feel like being up there celebrating dancing at the inauguration itself.

COOPER: And the -- I mean, the importance of a peaceful transfer of power, of honoring that, of honoring that tradition. That's not something -- did that weigh on you at all?

BEYER: Not really. We've had -- I think we're going to hand out over 400 tickets to my constituents who want to come. Lots of people want those seats.

I can watch the speech at home and not be part of the celebration, because it's not a presidency that I will celebrate. I will honor it. We will work together where we can.

I'm finding that my constituents in northern Virginia overwhelmingly support the decision not to go. They're very afraid of what he's going to do with federal employees. They're very terrified of what's going to happen to the Affordable Care Act. We're terrified about what Pruitt and others might do to the Environmental Protection Agency. And this just isn't a time to celebrate.

COOPER: Does it help, though -- you say you'll work with the administration where you can. Does it help in your ability to work with the administration by not going? I mean, doesn't it make it harder to work?

BEYER: You know, I've been as polite and respectful as I can. But at the same time, pointing out clearly that his values, at least as expressed throughout this long campaign and what I hold dear are diametrically opposed.

COOPER: Would this have been the same for any Republican candidate?

BEYER: No, I don't think so. It seems to me that Donald Trump is very much an outlier, even in terms of the Republicans that I know and like. I have many Republican friends in the House who never act the way he's acted on this campaign. And in fact, there's a great piece in "The Post" this morning, Dana Milbank, that talks about the sore winner complex --

COOPER: I have to break in here. Apologies. We're just getting tape in from president-elect Trump's remarks on what's called the Chairman's Global Dinner pre-inauguration event not far from here. Among the guests, about 200 members of the diplomatic corps.

This is tape, we're taking it straight air. So watch it for the first time together. We'll have more when we come back, right after it.



TRUMP: Thank you, everybody.

What that good pic that was, right? The balancing act felt so much better. Oh, I had a couple of beauties I could have picked. They were good, too. But maybe, it wouldn't have worked out like Mike.

I want to thank Mike and Karen, and I want to thank all of the people in the room. We have so many friends, 147 diplomats and ambassadors. Never been done before. We've never had them.


Oh, I know how safe this room is. Boy, oh, boy. This is one -- this place is surrounded tonight.

But I want to thank you all for being here. We have great respect for your countries. We have great respect for our world.

We have a man that I wanted right from the beginning, Rex Tillerson, and these lights are bright, but he's around here someplace. Where's our Rex?


What a job. Thank you very much. Thanks, Rex.

I think it's tougher than he thought. Again, he's led a charmed life. Goes into a country, takes the oil, goes into another country.


It's tough dealing with these politicians, right?

He's going to be so incredible. I'm very proud of him. I'm very proud of everybody. The cabinet members. We have put together a team I think the likes of which have never been assembled before.

So, we'll have further reports in the years to come. But I think you'll see that.

I also want to tell you, you know, so many people are talking about what's going on, and now they just announced, they think we're going to have record crowds coming. I saw the Bikers for Trump. Boy, they had a scene today. I don't know if I would want to ride one of those, but they do like me.

That's like additional security with those guys. And they're rough and they get on that Harley, usually Harley, made right here in America.

And they had a scene today where that helicopter's flying over a highway some place in this country, and they had thousands of those guys coming into town.

[20:25:09] And let me tell you, they are great people. And we are getting, I think I must have gotten 100 percent of their votes, between the military and the police --


COOPER: And that was the tape that we got. Not sure why it cut out when it did, but that's the tape we were given.

Congressman Beyer, you're a former diplomat, represented the U.S., I think, to Switzerland.

What do you make of Donald Trump's reception by foreign diplomats and the questions that many internationally have about where the U.S. is headed?

BEYER: Well, there certainly was nothing objectionable in that tape, but the comments over the weekend about NATO being obsolete, about trading Russian sanctions for additional nuclear arms, my experience is almost everybody in Europe is terrified of what the Trump presidency may mean, for just the U.S./NATO alliance.

COOPER: I want to bring in the rest of the panel. I know they have questions, also joining us, Kirsten Powers, "USA Today" columnist.

I know, John, you have a question.

KING: To your point about not going, you're not going because you have fundamental policy disagreements, character disagreements with Mr. Trump, or do you like Congressman John Lewis, view him as an illegitimate president?

BEYER: John, I'm not willing to say he's illegitimate, I don't know. I mean, right now, he's certainly legitimate enough to be sworn in on Friday. But the Senate and House have not done their deep dives on the intelligence reports. We may find illegitimacy later.

For the time being, I think -- I honor President Obama's notion that he should be sworn in --


KING: I'm sorry, but you don't think you're hurting your constituents? He's going to have to make a lot of big decisions about, you live in an area where there's a lot of -- your district, a lot of Pentagon spending, a lot of federal workers. You don't think you're going to hurt your seat at the table with him when he's making those tough decisions?

Because you know his history. Somebody gets in his face, he tends to counterpunch back. He's not a hugger if you offend him.

BEYER: We noticed that with John Lewis this weekend.


BEYER: Yes, I'm not. Maybe I should be, but what I'm finding is that most of the things that he's laid out so far, on the environment, on women, on national defense, Affordable Care Act, the way we treat federal employees, already, my folks are scared to death and they're up in arms. So, I think, actually, there was a symbolic importance to my members of my constituents to say I'm not coming.

COOPER: Did you make your decision after John Lewis?

BEYER: Yes, I actually did, but not because of John Lewis. Although I do think John Lewis actually gave a lot of Democrats cover.


LORD: Congressman, I have to ask, I'm being humorous here, but it's a serious matter. I wonder when I listen to you and there are four Democrats in Pennsylvania, my home state, according to Dr. Terry Madonna from Franklin and Marshall that are doing the same as you, I have to ask -- are you all on Donald Trump's payroll?

I mean, this is a guy who was elected president in part because he campaigned against Washington elites. And I can only tell you the political effect it would seem to me of what you're doing is to reinforce that impression and help him. I mean, did you think of that?

BEYER: I didn't think of that, and I hope that's not true. In fact, you know, I think part of what you have to do is you have to be authentic. And his --

LORD: That's the problem. They think you are being authentic!

BEYER: Well, I am being authentic. And really to John's question, it's not so much about policy, he's a Republican, he's going to have different policy perspectives than I do. It's more character. It's the character that I don't like. It's the character that I don't want to celebrate.

BORGER: But how do you represent your constituents who voted for him? He didn't get 100 percent in your district. And so, the constituents who voted for him, don't they believe that their congressman should be there representing them at the swearing in?

BEYER: Well, if I look at how Donald Trump did in my district, which is about 20 percent, I think that if there was a poll in my district, I think they would overwhelmingly tell me to stay home.


KIRSTEN POWERS, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Are you concerned at all that this might be setting a precedent, though, that we could start seeing this at every inauguration, that people will find things they find objectionable?

Because you're making a very different argument actually that some of your colleagues, which is that John Lewis says it's illegitimate because it seems that there was Russian interference. That's not really what you're saying. You're saying, I just -- I find him offensive. And I think a lot of people could say they find other people offensive.

Is this a good precedent?

BEYER: You know, I would have been happy to go to George Bush's, either one, or George Herbert Walker Bush, or both, Reagan. The policy difference is easier to get over because we come from different perspective. We represent different constituencies.

The character, I think, goes much deeper, into who we are as Americans, what we value in terms of women and each other.

POWERS: I have -- I'll let you go, but that's what people would have said about Bill Clinton, right? There were plenty of Republicans who said, they had serious issues with his character, over certain things that happened with women. In fact, and people still went to his inauguration.

BEYER: Yes, I don't quite know how to answer that. I just know that for me to be authentic is to express it as I have been.

BERNSTEIN: But he is the legitimate president of the United States until proven otherwise.

[20:30:02] And yet I think what's happening, you tell me if I'm wrong, is that a great number of people believed that he has demonstrated himself especially in the transition to be unfit in some ways to be president and to avoid endorsing what his actions have been by not showing up. That's what people were telling me. But at the same time to recognize the legitimacy of what the Electoral College did, what the people of the United States did. If there is something to be found out later, that's something else.

They want to boycott, which is really what you're talking about I think because you disagree with the man and his policies and find him abhorrent, come out and say that. But this is not about legitimacy. It seems to me he is the legitimate president.

COOPER: Congressman, and we got to go.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That eloquently put and I agree.

COOPER: Oh all right. And I appreciate your time tonight. Coming up next, new reporting on the price tag and the human cost of repealing Obamacare and what's make the president-elect Trump's plan. He's calling for insurance for everybody. The question is what exactly does that mean? And what did your lawmakers think it mean. We'll be right back.


[20:35:01] COOPER: More breaking news, this outside the world of politics. The search for a man thought to be responsible for the deaths of his ex-girlfriend and two police officers in Orlando is over. Markeith Lloyd is now custody. Nick Valencia joins us with the latest. So what do we learn about the details of the arrests Nick?

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is been more a week since Master Sergeant Debra Clayton was shot and killed in the Orlando area. And after that week of hunting for her suspected killer, Markeith Lloyd was finally taken into custody earlier today. And the announcement made on the Orlando Police Department Twitter profile page.

If you factor in that he is accused also of shooting and killing his pregnant ex-girlfriend in mid-December, Markeith Lloyd, that man that you just saw dragged into the police department there in Orlando was on the run for more than a month. More than 1,400 tips, a reward, it's weld over $100,000 and hundreds of law enforcement officials fanning not just all across Florida but all across the country. Markeith Lloyd captured in the very same community where he's accused of shooting and killing Debra Clayton just about five miles from where that shooting scene happen.

And Anderson, if there's just a punctuation to this arrest, Keith Lloyd -- Markeith Lloyd when he was taken into custody, he was arrested using the handcuffs of Sergeant Debra Clayton who was posthumously promoted to lieutenant. I just got off the phone with Jack Williams, a friend of Sergeant Debra Clayton -- or Lieutenant Clayton I should say. He tells me Anderson, I'm just so excited that Markeith Lloyd can't do harm to anyone else. This brings closure to not just myself, he says, but also the media family. Anderson?

COOPER: Nick Valencia. Nick thanks very much.

Back to the world of politics. We've been talking tonight about all the controversy surrounding President-elect Trump, and this next item adds to it, confusion and some potential conflict with his own party over what to do about the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare.

Today we got new word on what repealing it without a replacement might mean. The non-partisan congressional budget office predicting that 18 million people will lose coverage in the first year alone. Premiums could double in a decade. And now as GOP lawmakers grapple with what to do next, the president-elect is thrown a wild car on the table telling reporters that his own plan will cover everybody.

The central problem is CNN Phil Mattingly discovered, Mr. Trump and congressional Republicans may not be on the same page on health care or even perhaps in the same zip code. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: For Republicans on Capitol Hill, president-elect Trump's decision to weigh in with his ideas for health care reform not exactly been a positive development. Here's the fact that no one seems to have any details about the plan. Even though he told "The Washington Post" it's nearly finalized.

Senator, do you believe the president-elect's plan to have universal coverage is something you guys can do?

SEN. LAMAR ALEXANDER, (R) TENNESSEE: We'll just have to see what his plan is.

MATTINGLY: Senator Lamar Alexander is the chairman of the Senate Health Committee, a crucial Capitol Hill player in the effort to replace the Affordable Care Act, yet.

Have you spoken him about his plan?

ALEXANDER: I have not.

MATTINGLY: Then, there's what Trump actually pledged his plan would do, namely that will include, "Insurance for everybody".

Senator can I ask you that president-elect saying he wants the universal coverage in his health care plan, is that something you agree with?

Trump's comments cut to the heart of the health care debate, who and how many will get health care insurance in? Top GOP officials have been very specific in their description. It's about access, not universal coverage.

SEN. JOHN HOEVEN, (R) NORTH DAKOTA: Yes, we want to make sure people are covered right, but we want to do in a way that brings down costs, so the idea is to repeal and replace concurrently.

MATTINGLY: The idea everyone would be able to get coverage?

HOEVEN: We want to make sure everybody has access to coverage and we want make it more affordable.

MATTINGLY: A message Trump clearly diverged from in his remarks. And want that could come back to by Republicans in the future.

Senator Portman, can I ask if you've seen the president-elect's comments about universal health care, and if you think that's doable, would you replace package?

SEN. ROB PORTMAN, (R) OHIO: I think we can do better than the current system and that's the point.


COOPER: Phil Mattingly joins us from Capitol Hill. So president- elect, the point first of all of this is Tom Price, his pick to run HHS. What are you hearing about where he stand on it?

MATTINGLY: Probably, the most interesting dynamic of all. This -- look Tom Price is a long time House guy. He's a member of Congress. He's very close relationships with congressional leadership. Now by all accounts he's really been hold up preparing for his confirmation hearing whether they're expected to be a lot of fireworks tomorrow.

But when you talk to House lawmakers and some Senate lawmakers as well quietly they point to Tom Price at HHS as being one of the crucial components of their repeal plan. He can do a lot unilaterally over there, whether it's dealing with the subsidies, the relationships with the insurance companies, trying to ease the burden there, and frankly, also rewriting a lot of the rules that dictate the Affordable Care Act. He has a lot of power on his own. So at least at this point, Anderson, he appears at least to the guys in the House, to be their ally.

I think the big question is, as you know, where does he come down once he's in that position and when proposals are actually shot out if one actually comes from the Trump team at all? Anderson?

COOPER: All right, we'll see. Phil Mattingly, thanks.

Coming up, a big day coming up for the president, the president-elect moving day.

We'll show you what is involved in moving into and out of the White House.


[20:43:59] COOPER: White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said today that when the Obamas' leave the White House Friday, they'll be heading to Palm Springs, California, and they seems to be getting a head start. Movers were spotted today moving boxes into the house. They will be leasing in Washington. And of course as they leave, the Trump family will come in right behind them. A quick turn around to single list. It is a practiced choreography.

Randi Kaye has more tonight about what actually happens on moving day.


RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's organized chaos inside the White House on inauguration day. By 10:45 a.m. the Obamas' will likely leave the White House for good, giving the Chief usher and his staff just six hours to get the 132 room mansion ready for the new administration. Former White House Chief Usher Gary Walters helped coordinate the moves of five presidents including Reagan, Bush 41, Clinton, and Bush 43.

GARY WALTERS, FMR. WHITE HOUSE CHIEF USHER: It's a choreograph, it's like a ballet.

KAYE: The Chief Usher had the SWAT team of about 90 staffers but every second counts. By the time Donald and Melania Trump return from the inaugural parade, the White House has to feel like home.

[20:45:03] WALTERS: Their clothes are in their closets. Their personal effects are in the bathroom. Their favorite foods are in the kitchen. We break the staff down almost minute to minute on their activities.

KAYE: Florists, art curators, carpenters all pitch in.

With only three small elevators in the White House residence getting one president out and the other in is never easy. Depending on how much Donald Trump is planning to redecorate, walls need to be painted, carpet changed, paintings hung, books set on shelves. The staff eats at scheduled times so the work never stops.

The Chief Usher usually works closely with the first lady. Walters helped Hillary Clinton choose wallpaper and Laura Bush picked out China. But even a dance as well choreographed as this one isn't always perfect. In 1993, Walters lost his voice and had to write all directions on a notepad. When Bill Clinton arrived he welcomed him with a whisper. That same year Mrs. Clinton's inaugural ball gown disappeared during the move.

WALTERS: There was a rather frightful time for about 15 minutes until we located the dress.

KAYE: And on inauguration day 1989, Bush 41's granddaughters surprised the White House staff by showing up two and half hours early in the middle of the move.

This year if all goes smoothly, the Trumps will never know the chaos that preceded their arrival at the White House. The Chief Usher will meet Donald Trump at the door and offer a simple greeting, welcome, Mr. President, to your new home.

Randi Kaye, CNN, Washington.


COOPER: And joining me now is Anita McBride, who was the Chief of Staff to First Lady Laura Bush. It's exhausting just thinking about that. It really does sound like a controlled chaos.

ANITA MCBRIDE, FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF OF FIRST LADY LAURA BUSH: It is and to think about it that this particular inauguration, the parade is almost an hour and a half or two hours shorter --

COOPER: Which means less time for them?

MCBRIDE: -- in which it's less time for them. And I've thought about that.

COOPER: And it's amazing to me that I mean everything from the Obamas has to be out and that everything from the -- I mean does the Trump family send stuff that they already have earmarked what they want in various rooms?

MCBRIDE: It's -- and typically that is what happen. It is after that first meeting where, you know, we saw Mrs. Obama greeted.

COOPER: Right.

MCBRIDE: Mrs. Trump, the Chief Usher would begin to have a conversation with people on Mrs. Trump's team to start to go through this checklist of things that they will want to move in, things that they want to have in the house. So those kinds of conversations have been going on.

COOPER: And I mean really their clothes will be hanging, their -

MCBRIDE: Their clothes will be hanging.


MCBRIDE: Their inaugural items will be laid out for them, food that they want to have. Beds will be made for all of their overnight guests if they're going to have overnight guests there. The sheets and towels they have pre-selected will be there too.

COOPER: But they're not redoing the entire White House, right?


COOPER: And we were talking before we went on air, they really only have sway over certain rooms, the private quarters.

MCBRIDE: This is one of the most wonderful lasting legacies of First Lady Jackie Kennedy, in creating the committee for the preservation of the White House and the White House historical association which has some control and a lot of say over what happens in the state rooms of course. But in the private residence, the apartment where the family will live, they do have jurisdiction over that.

COOPER: So they can bring just --


COOPER: -- on the Obamas that they can bring an interior designer to come in.

MCBRIDE: That's right.

COOPER: And will be the private --


MCBRIDE: And work with the White House curator, work with the Usher, putting up new wallpaper, putting up new carpet.

COOPER: But that's done over time.

MCBRIDE: That's done over time. There will be some thing so that may have been preselected by the new first family. There's a vast warehouse of White House collection, of furniture, and rugs, and draperies and things that have are part of the collection, artifacts that they may have selected to be ready and moved into the house.

COOPER: The other thing I also find fascinating is that the presidential family is responsible for some of the cost, like all the food they eat, they have to pay for.

MCBRIDE: They're responsible for a lot of costs. In fact, that was one of the things as Chief of Staff to Mrs. Bush that I would received the monthly family bill that I revealed and --

COOPER: So what else the size to that you have to pay for?

MCBRRIDE: Well you pay for your food, pay for dry cleaning. You know, you pay if you have pets. You're going to pay for the veterinarian. You're going to pay for the pet's foods. You're going to pay for all of those little things that you would buy toiletries that you buy, personal items. Somebody will go do it for you.

COOPER: Right.

MCBRIDE: But you will pay for it. And I think that's appropriate.

COOPER: Yeah, well, Anita McBride fascinating. Thank you so much.

MCBRIDE: Thank you Anderson.

COOPER: Coming up, optimism for the Trump presidency. We're going to hear from owners of a cheese burger place in Detroit who say they are hopeful that the president-elect will make good on his promises. More on that ahead.


[20:53:33] COOPER: In three days, Donald Trump takes the oath of office. In fact, it inspires hope in many Americans, anxiety in many others. Next hour, we're going to hear from some immigrants, and people who protect them about why they are concerned, but hoping Trump will have a change of heart. Right, we want to hear from restaurant owners in Michigan who were very optimistic about Donald Trump's presidency. Martin Savidge tonight reports.


MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: On Detroit's northeast side, the fresh meat Sears and the real onion glaze in a mouth watering magic.


SAVIDGE: Sliders roll off in Tennessee burger's grill like Chevys off an assembly line. But seize-burgers, cheeseburgers is no industry giant. There is just Todd.


SAVIDGE: His wife Jill, two stories and 20 employees. They're opened seven days, but every evening still making it a point to have dinner with their two kids. Who cooks on that one?


SAVIDGE: So far, they've managed to make it work for nine years.

What's the dream? What are you aiming for? What are you hoping for?

T. SEEBURGER: The dream is actually we're almost there I think. Just staying there and we call our own shots and be our own boss.

SAVIDGE: That's the same dream of the nation's 28 million small business owners. Many of whom voted for Donald Trump. Including Todd and Jill who, like many I talked to, felt forgotten by Washington.

SEEBURGER: They just told us what we needed to know or what we needed to do or how we needed to think. And they didn't talk to us. They didn't ask us.

[20:55:06] SAVIDGE: But both felt the connection to Trump. They liked the way he talks, though not always what is he says.


SAVIDGE: And most of all, they feel that he knows their dreams and struggles better than any politician.

J. SEEBURGER: It seems a lot of politicians in Washington. Their career, they don't hire and fire people. It's not their personal money on the line, it's the government's money when they hire and fire people. It's not their own personal money they've earned.

T. SEEBURGER: Kid's college money here and whatever.


SAVIDGE: Jill and Todd hopes that Trump will deliver on promises to cut corporate taxes, roll back regulations and reform Obamacare and that's just for starters.

T. SEEBURGER: I would like to see some of these manufacturing jobs come back to the metro area. I'd like to see the overtime come back, I'd like to see the extra money come back.

SAVIDGE: You see Todd and Jill say, small business is linked to big business. If Trump makes things better for General Motor, then GM hires more people or pays higher wages, creating that extra money which people spend on things like cheeseburgers.

If you improve people's personal economies, they come and spend money in a place like this.


SAVIDGE: Do you think that's going to work? Do you think it's going to happen? T. SEEBURGER: I think that's already happened.

SAVIDGE: Sales they say are already going up. But Jill does have some advice for the president-elect.

J.SEEBURGER: Stay off Twitter.

SAVIDGE: Building that wall and reforming immigrant.

Lastly, I ask what if Trump doesn't deliver on all these promises.

What would you do?

T. SEEBURGER: If this turns out to be a lip service and then things don't get addressed then definitely we research in another candidate for the 2020 election?


T. SEEBURGER: I voted for him. I didn't marry him. So if he can pull it off, and then stick to his guns then --



COOPER: And Martin Savidge joins us now, did the small business owners you talked to, did they openly demonstrate support for Donald Trump before the election?

SAVIDGE: No, no they didn't, by any means. In fact, his wondered, whether they would put some kind of sign in their window. But they said, no, they were worried because of the controversy surrounding the campaign because of the divisiveness within the nation. They felt it might drive off business. So they were what they called silent Trump supporters. And it's also because they live in Macomb County, which is traditional Democrat territory here in Michigan.

But as it turns out, Macomb County actually went for Donald Trump which helped swing Michigan to Donald Trump, which helped swing the victory for the nation to Donald Trump. Anderson.

COOPER: Yeah, it certainly did. Martin Savidge, Martin thanks very much.

Coming up, our second hour, live from Washington, in his last days in office, a big move from President Obama, he is commuting the sentence of Chelsea Manning, a former soldier and transgender woman serving a 35-year sentence at an all-male Army prison. The latest on that, next.


COOPER: And good evening, thanks, for joining us, the top of the hour of breaking news. The reaction to President Obama's decision today to commute a sentence of Chelsea Manning, the former Army Private doing 35-years, 11 worth for leaking hundreds of thousands of government documents.

[21:00:05] Some called her a whistle blower, some called her a traitor. Whatever you call her the decision to free her in May has touch off was likely be the final controversy in the Obama administration.