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New Infighting Within Trump's Team; New Jobs Added to the U.S.; Only Straight Are Allowed; Cutting Press Freedom; A Mother's Life in Danger. Aired 3-4a ET

Aired July 27, 2017 - 03:00   ET



[03:00:00] MAX FOSTER CNN ANCHOR: A bizarre tweet from the new White House communications director. He claims to be the victim of a leak and seems to point the finger at the chief of staff, then he changes the story and deletes the tweets. What's going on?

Plus, caught off guard, President Trump stunned the military by announcing a ban on all transgender service members, but how will this policy affect the thousands already serving.

And Mr. Trump touting thousands of new jobs coming to Wisconsin. We'll look at the company making the $10 billion investment.

Hello and welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. I'm Max Foster in London. This is CNN Newsroom.

Well, late night developments at the White House suggested a dramatic new round of infighting within President Trump's inner circle. The incoming White House Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci got onto Twitter to say "In light of the leak of my financial disclosure info, which is a phony, I will be contacting the FBI and the Justice Department. Hash tag, swamp at Reince 45."

CNN contributor Ryan Lizza spoke with Don Lemon about Scaramucci's tweet.


RYAN LIZZA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I did talk to a senior White House official today. Before that tweet was posted. And this is what Anthony Scaramucci believes, that I'm told that he wants the FBI to look into Reince, whether there's anything illegal that Reince Priebus did, with respect to leaks of financial disclosure information.

So I'm sort of flabbergasted at this whole thing, Don. I've never seen a White House where someone, even privately calls the FBI on someone but then to actually tweet about it is sort of astonishing.

And remember, last week, Anthony Scaramucci was talking about how he and Reince were going to get along...

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Yes. LIZZA: ... just well, and a lot of reporters who know a little bit about this relationship were sort of laughing about that, because they had just, you know, been so at odds for the last six months.


FOSTER: Scaramucci countered, wrong. Tweet was public notice to leakers that all senior administration officials are helping to end the illegal leaks at Reince 45. That tracks what Scaramucci said in an earlier interview about White House leaks.


ANTHONY SCARAMUCCI, WHITE HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: It will be virtually impossible to get rid of every leak, but I think we can take dramatic steps to get rid of leaks, and one of the big problems here at I'm discovering in the Trump's team is that senior people are really the guys doing the leaking, and they ask junior people to leak for them.


FOSTER: Joining me now is Jacob Parakilas, he is the assistant head of the U.S. and Americas program Chatham House here in London. Thanks for joining us. What did you make of that that we saw last night? The fact that he deleted it seems to suggest that the narrative might have been right.

JACOB PARAKILAS, ASSISTANT PROJECT DIRECTOR, CHATHAM HOUSE: Yes, I mean, the financial disclosure forms are in fact accessible to the public. They're, that's why they're disclosure forms. They're intended to give the public transparency about what senior officials hold, financially, not specifically but in broad terms so people can have an idea of sort that their public servants aren't engaged in corruption.

So, I guess is that, Scaramucci didn't immediately understand what had been leaked and he tweeted something and then realized that he tweets something and sort of, he got rid of the tweet.

But I, you know, this is all sort of, inside baseball within the White House, and I would defer to the people reporting on it from the ground.

FOSTER: Yes. But it does play into this idea that there's a big split in the White House. If he's just coming in and feeling it, then it does show that, you know, it's potentially a much bigger concern than we'd realize.

PARAKILAS: Sure, and the narrative around leaks has been sort of, swirling around this White House since the very beginning. It's always been an institution, the Trump White House, where people are willing to talk to reporters, where even sort of negative and damaging stories are sourced from five or six or in one case in the Washington Post, 30 anonymous sources.

So there's a huge amount of communication going on and internal positioning that's surprisingly public.

FOSTER: When Donald Trump says there's no break down in the White House, perhaps he's right as well, because he has had this history, hasn't he, of bringing people together who vie against each other, and he perhaps does things in business that works better. So divide and rule effectively. So this might be an intentional sort of culture that he's creating in the White House.

[03:04:59] PARAKILAS: I think it's fair to say that it's intentional culture. It's certainly along the lines of what he did in the private sector where he would have people sort of create there individual key terms and sort of compete within the institution to see who can be the most successful.

FOSTER: Which is a management technique.

PARAKILAS: It is a management technique. It's a controversial management technique.


PARAKILAS: But it is, you have seen companies do it in the past. The problem is that when part of the story is sort of, or part of the technique is going to the press and kind of diminishing your rivals, that makes it more difficult for those rivals to do their jobs and those are in the public trust.

FOSTER: OK. And the other, you know, issue got within the circle there is with Sessions, isn't it, the way that Donald Trump is undermining him in public when he's meant to be part of his team. But that is creating real tension in wider Washington. Just explain to us where we are with that.

PARAKILAS: Well, that one is very strange. Because Sessions is a number of things. First, he was Trump's first senatorial endorser. He was one of Trump's most loyal surrogate. He was one of the people who sort of, spoke up for Trump the most in the hardest and lowest moments of his campaign.

So it's surprising that after six months in office, Trump is willing to publicly and repeatedly attack Jeff Sessions, and that sends a message to congressional republicans, many of whom don't have the same kind of sort of, innate loyalty to the Trump administration that this isn't something that they can expect, that the loyalty is expected to move upwards but isn't necessarily reciprocated.

And you've seen that in the public statements from republican senators for whom Jeff Sessions is a former colleague. Basically defending him and saying that Trump is in the wrong criticizing him.

FOSTER: He's creating, you know, an alternative camp there himself, isn't he, Donald Trump, because people are siding Sessions and that's becoming a problem for him because the --

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