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Report: FBI Chief Overstated Clinton Aide Emails; WH Calls Yates Political Opponent of President; Father Suing Fired Cop Who Killed His Son. Aired 3:30-4p ET
Aired May 9, 2017 - 15:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[15:30:00] BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Not only that but emails that were classified were not actually marked classified at the time. With me now, the former Republican chairman of the house intelligence committee. Congressman, welcome back. Good to see you.
PETE HOEKSTRA, FORMER HOUSE INTEL CHAIRMAN: Good to see you. Thank you.
BALDWIN: So, on James Comey, this is a guy who has prided himself in rushing in to correct the record on multiple occasions, including the infamous letter ten days before the Presidential election. His words have become political talking points. Why do you think James Comey isn't rushing in to correct the record this time?
HOEKSTRA: I mean, you have to ask James Comey about that. It's obviously an embarrassing place for the director of the FBI to be, to be that wrong about that kind of a statistic, about that kind of an issue. The thing that happened just before the election. It's a bad place for the FBI director to be.
BALDWIN: Although when Sean Spicer was asked does the President still have most confidence in James Comey, essentially Spicer responded, hasn't told me anything differently, so yes. Sean Spicer during the briefing, they were talking about the former acting general, sally yates and of course, her testimony yesterday, and when Spicer was asked about her, he referred to her as a political opponent of the President. Political opponent. What do you make of that characterization?
HOEKSTRA: Well, I think that the decision that she made to not defend the President's directive on the immigration effort clearly indicated that she has a partisan bent to her I think that was a political decision.
BALDWIN: Congressman, if I may just jump in, if you look back to her record as a prosecutor, there have been Democrats who have balked at her including Congressman John Lewis out of Georgia, because of a totally separate case years ago. The role, the partisan role was entirely flipped back then.
HOEKSTRA: It may have been totally flipped back then but this is the relationship and this is the experience that this President and this administration had with the former acting attorney general. They viewed it as a partisan behavior and so their experience with her is yes, she made a partisan decision in not supporting this President and the activities he wanted to conduct to keep America safe.
BALDWIN: How was she not supporting him when she was going to Don McGahn, the general counsel at the white house, and saying that the then national security adviser was compromised by Russia?
HOEKSTRA: Well, in that instance, she was doing what she thought was the appropriate thing to do. She went to the white house, she issued the warning to the administration, the administration considered the warnings and the admonitions that she provided with them --
BALDWIN: For 18 days.
HOEKSTRA: For 18 days. Which is an appropriate time. Number one, this isn't someone the President did not appoint. He did not know her. She came in to the white house and said this guy is susceptible to blackmail. Well, as soon as the white house and the FBI are saying that, we know that that's not going to happen because it's now clear everybody knows what the situation is so the immediate danger and the immediate threat of general Flynn being blackmailed, that was gone. So, this then provided the administration time to check all the facts, what he had done, what he said to the vice President, the information that was provided to it by the justice department and to move forward and make a decision.
[15:35:00] I wouldn't have expected them to fire general Flynn immediately. They went through a process, reached a decision and made a conclusion.
BALDWIN: How about Senator Lindsey Graham yesterday, he said one moment surprised him. Watch this with me.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LINDSEY GRAHAM, SENATOR, SOUTH CAROLINA: General Clapper, during your investigation of all things Russian, did you ever find a situation where a Trump business interest in Russia gave you concern?
JAMES CLAPPER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Not in the course of the preparation of the intelligence community assessment.
CLAPPER: I'm sorry?
GRAHAM: At all, any time.
CLAPPER: Senator Graham, I can't comment on that because that impacts the investigation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: We also, let me add this, during the press briefing today at the white house, President Trump instructed this D.C. law firm to send Senator Graham a certified letter saying that he has no business connections to Russia. Any concerns here? HOEKSTRA: No. Well, the concern here is that the intelligence
community prepared what they call a unanimous appraisal of the situation of which I believe the FBI was a part of and for the FBI as part of the deliberations leading to that document, not sharing with the rest of the intelligence community, I think it was the NSA and the CIA, that there was an ongoing investigation and then putting this document forward seems a little bizarre to me. You would have thought that the importance of putting out a unified intelligence statement is that everybody's sitting at the table, puts all of the cards on the table so that everybody knows all of the facts as they are moving forward. That's the surprising thing, the DNI, director of national intelligence, would not have been aware of this situation.
BALDWIN: Congressman, appreciate it.
Next, brand new developments just in involving this murder mystery inside a penthouse in Boston. These two doctors engaged to be married were brutally killed. Hear about the suspect's connections to the building.
[15:40:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
BALDWIN: Investigators in south Boston are trying to unravel this high-profile murder mystery. These two doctors who were engaged to be married were killed last Friday inside their luxury penthouse. Police found their bodies, throats slashed, hands bound. Moments before police stumbled upon the suspected killer still in the penthouse. Alison Kosik has new details about the suspect. We are way off of answering why but what's the connection?
ALISON KOSIK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: What we are learning is that you look at this luxury condominium complex, it's more than one building. Several years ago, the suspect did work in the complex adjacent to where the couple lived as a security guard. We don't know for how long. Knowing that Richard Field, the man who was murdered, part of this couple, he lived in this complex since 2013. It is possible their paths could have crossed but it's interesting because you look at this complex, it's not easy to get into. You need a key FOB to get into the building. The elevator won't open if you don't have a key. There's a concierge there 24/7. We are also learning the suspect has a record serving nine months in prison for two larceny convictions. He was basically convicted for passing notes to a bank teller, the same bank, in two different incidents. He just got out a few weeks ago before this incident.
BALDWIN: Just the way they were killed. So, grisly, personal. I hope they get him to start talking. That's so horrible for those families. Thank you so much.
Coming up next on CNN, two teenagers who witnessed a deadly, police shooting of their friends are speaking out about what happened when an officer fired his weapon. Also, new details about the lawsuit filed by the family of Jordan Edwards.
[15:45:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK) BALDWIN: The father of a Texas teenager killed by police is now suing the officer who took his son's life. 15-year-old Jordan Edwards was leaving a party with his two brothers and two friends last month near Dallas when an officer just started shooting at them in their car. One of the bullets hit Jordan in the head, killing him. His two friends who were in the car with him that night are now speaking out. The twin brothers say the officer had no reason to shoot.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAXWELL EVERETTE, FRIEND OF TEEN KILLED BY POLICE: We did nothing wrong. We never heard no cop tell us to stop or anything like that. We didn't know what was going on until that happened. Really, nobody did anything wrong. It was five innocent people, somebody ended up getting shot over nothing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BALDWIN: The officer who shot Jordan, Roy Oliver, has been fired and is now out on bond and first degree murder charges. Nick Valencia is working this one for me. Tell me more about this lawsuit.
NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There were five people in that car. You heard from two of the teenagers. While they said, they may not have heard anyone tell them to stop the car, this lawsuit filed by the victim's father, Jordan Edwards' father, claims otherwise. It says at the very least, the driver of that car heard someone say quote, stop the car. But before the driver could do anything, the lawsuit claims, that's when officer Oliver began opening fire. This lawsuit is a wrongful death lawsuit but makes a lot of racial claims against the police department. Here's one of the most important parts of this lawsuit which is over 20 pages.
[15:50:00] It says quote, it was not until the release of body cam footage that chief of police changed his defense of defendant Oliver. The officer who fatally killed Jordan Edwards. Additionally, a police officer at the scene of the shooting also attempted to cover up for the defendant murder of Edwards, in other words, but for the release of the body cam footage, the policy makers and other officers would have stood in defense of Oliver. Plaintiff seeks answers and compensation for damages and wrongful death of Jordan Edwards.
This lawsuit goes after the officer who fired the shots but also goes after the African American mayor and city council and chief of police, saying this wasn't enough training for these police officers, creating a culture which never gives Edwards a chance at living that day. Here's one of the racial claims made against the officer. The driver of that car according to the lawsuit said quote, an officer commented this "n" word doesn't know his left from his right. That heard by the driver of the car after being instructed to walk backwards. The father of the victim claims that all of this shows the racial makeup that this police department at the very least made it very difficult for African American teens. We reached out to the police department to give comments. They are not commenting on pending litigation. We also reached out to the attorneys but neither were available by the time of this report. We can tell you officer Oliver is out on bond. There is no timetable to when he will make his first court appearance.
BALDWIN: Nick, thank you.
Next, humiliating scene playing out in school cafeterias across America. Kids being lunch-shamed because they can't afford it. We will discuss that.
First, take a look at this week's upstarts. An L.A. company reinvented the concept of a circus with the unique mix of engineering and technology.
BRENT BUSHNELL, CEO, TWO BIT CIRCUS: Oftentimes I will be talking with people and they are like what do you do? I'm like I run a circus. Some folks are like yes, I got a web design firm. We are kind of a circus, too. I said no, no, we are really a circus. Lasers, fire, robots. We are a location-based entertainment company creating the future of fun. People have a lot of options for entertainment. We are adding to that landscape in a new way. And adding new styles of interaction. We are a location-based entertainment company creating the future of fun. People have a lot of options for entertainment. We are adding to that landscape in a new way. And adding new styles of interaction.
New styles of play. It was a bunch of nerds that would get together once you know, it was a bunch of nerds that would collaborate on stuff and we started making interactive art and then Microsoft called and said would you do all the entertainment for our e3 party. We said is there actual party here? Is this a high-tech circus? It was fascinating because the brands kept coming, so Intel, Honda, Cisco, IBM. We started working with all these monster companies as a tiny little group of 30 nerds, but we were sitting at taint section of software and game design and fabrication and frankly out-of-home entertainment. This stuff is really a ton of fun. You know, sometimes I can't really believe I get to call this work. It really is work, you know. Make no mistake.
[15:55:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
BALDWIN: I want you to hear what happens to a number of children when they can't afford lunch at school. Instead of getting hot food like everyone else, they get a paper bag with a cold cheese sandwich and milk, and in some schools, there are two lines in the cafeteria. You have a line for pizza and the other line is for kids who can't afford to stand in the pizza line. Another school, the student says he was forced to mop the floors because his parents hadn't paid off his lunch money debt. At another a teacher says kids go around the cafeteria collecting food scraps from trays. At another, a homeless student in tears afraid show wouldn't be able to graduate because her lunch money debt piled up as her family lost their home. These are just a few examples of lunch shaming.
A child through no fault of his or her own treated differently or singled out because they are poor. It is happening in several states, and it's happening right here in America. 76 percent of school districts have kids with lunch debt, and nearly half of the nation's schoolchildren get free lunch. That had a massive jump from 17 years ago, and it's a problem my next guest is trying to fix. She is Jennifer Ramos, executive director of a nonprofit called New Mexico Apple Seed. Her team just wrote a law that just passed in New Mexico to end this practice, and a similar bill was introduced in Congress just yesterday. Jennifer, great to have you on.
JENNIFER RAMOS, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NEW MEXICO APPLE SEED: Thank you for having me.
BALDWIN: I mean, I just rattled off just really sad scene in the lunchroom that's playing out across the country. I'm sure you can tell me similar stories.
RAMOS: You know, it really is had a heartbreaking practice that children all over the United States go through every day when their parents haven't paid the bill, and a lot of times the parents may just need a little extra time. They may be paycheck to paycheck and they just need more time to pay the bill, and what ends up happening is children are ashamed and feel terrible and often go hungry. You had mentioned having two different lines for pizza or a cheese sandwich but many schools just give them nothing. If you don't have any money on you.
RAMOS: Or on your card.
BALDWIN: So how in New Mexico have you all worked to fix this?
RAMOS: You know, we've been working on this for about nine years. We originally heard about the cheese sandwiches in 2009, and we're just appalled. What the we did is tried to work diplomatically to get more and more gets introduced in reduced price meals. 50 percent of the lunch debt here was from children who should have been eligible from free and reduced-price meals and just weren't enrolled. We've come a long way improving that but ultimately at the end of the day we needed legislation that said we're not going to throw out meals that children have taken. We're not going to make them work to pay their lunch debt. We're not going to stamp their hands with ink saying that they owe money. We're just going to feed children, and that seemed like the right thing to do. Fortunately, our sponsor, Senator Michael Padilla and the governor, agreed.
BALDWIN: Which is great, but it's an issue nationwide, right? You all dealt with this in New Mexico and it's a question of how do you pay for it, and when you talk about lunch shaming, it shouldn't be shaming the kids. So, who should be shamed over this?
RAMOS: I don't think anyone should be shamed. I mean, one of the things that we do is make poor people feel bad for being poor. This is had a minor paper cut compared to what families in had the United States go through when they don't have enough money. So, this seems like a fairly easy fix, and we feed the children and then let the debt be settled by their parents. Oftentimes the parents just need a little more time to pay the bill and that's what we're going -- that's what we hope to give them with -- with this legislation and the anti- school lunch-shaming act that was introduced yesterday by the New Mexico delegation and others.
BALDWIN: Great job, Jennifer. Jennifer Ramos with New Mexico Apple Seed. Thank you. Before I let you go, let me show this story. Mayhem and just chaos erupting amongst Spirit Airlines passenger and employees. This is Hollywood International Airport in Florida. Angry passengers are filling the terminal after spirit cancelled dozens of flights. Multiple fights broke out, even with police. Three people were arrested and spirit has cancelled 100 flights over the last week. The airline blaming the pilots for filing suit. Yikes. I'm Brooke Baldwin. Thanks for being with me. "The Lead" With Jake Tapper starts right now.