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Investigators Change Key Part Of Shooting Timeline; Corker: Trump Setting Us "On The Path To World War III"; Keeping Them Honest; False Flag, False Accusation; Melania and Ivana Trump Spar Over "First Lady" Title; Andy Cohen On First Lady, Ivana Trump Trading Barbs. Aired 8-9p ET

Aired October 9, 2017 - 20:00   ET


[20:00:13] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Good evening.

We begin tonight with breaking news in the Las Vegas shooting that alters big pieces of what authorities have previously said about what happened that night in Vegas, a new timeline, including a substantially revised account of the moments before the mass killing begun.

CNN's Kyung Lah is in Vegas for us. She joins us now.

So, explain this new timeline, what the sheriff now says happened.

KYUNG LAH, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, just as you said this is a significant shift. Up until now, our information was that the gunman of the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Hotel was firing on this crowd, a crowd of 22,000 concert goers. And then he turned his gunfire to the security guard. So, shoot at the crowd first, then turns to security guard, and that diverts the gunfire from the crowd to the security guard.

The information we're getting today from the sheriff is that the security guard, Jesus Campos, was shot first. Here's what the sheriff said.


SHERIFF JOE LOMBARDO, LAS VEGAS METROPOLITAN POLICE: He was injured prior to the mass volume of shooting. What we have learned is that Mr. Campos was encountered by the suspect prior to his shooting to the outside world.


LAH: And this is a significant time shift, because according to what the sheriff says today, Anderson, it's a 6-minute time shift. The security guard was shot first, six minutes later, security cameras then see the first gunshots fire from the 32nd floor of the hotel room on to the crowd. So, a very different picture that we're getting. Not surprised for the security guard, security guard shot first.

COOPER: Right. It also raises question, because the sheriff also said the security guard notified hotel security and was able to stop a, I think it was a maintenance worker or something from being on the floor as well. But I don't understand. If he alerted hotel security, I would assume hotel security would have called police, so I would assume police would have been aware that shots were fired on the 32nd floor much sooner than perhaps they were if the hotel did call the police.

And it also raises a question of what then diverted the gunman, what stopped the gunman from shooting after 10 or 11 minutes outside. And why did he continue his rampage, was it that police by then had arrived? Do we know?

LAH: There are a lot of questions. All of these that you have, Anderson, we just don't -- can't answer and right now, at least the investigators don't appear to have those answers for us. So, there are a lot of questions that we have after this news we specifically have is this drilling.

I think the drilling here is key. The sheriff talked about how the security guard responded to an alarm on the floor, then we heard some drilling. And that made him turn his attention to this particular hotel room and he appeared to surprise the gunman. He was mid-way through this drilling, according to what sheriff said about the gunman and then started firing on the security guard.

So, yes, Anderson, a lot of questions about what happened in those six minutes and then in the very minutes following the mass shooting in this crowd.

COOPER: We also learned the shooter checked into the hotel days earlier than previously thought.

LAH: You're talking about a shift of three days. And this is very curious as well. What the sheriff initially told reporters and publicly is that the shooter checked in on the 28th. But today, it's now appearing to be the 25th. And investigators don't know what happened between the 25th and the 28th because the sheriff said it does not appear that the gunman was in the hotel room.

So what happened to those three days? Where was he? Another question they can't answer right now.

COOPER: I also understand you obtained a deception from 2013 from when the shooter was suing another casino.

LAH: This is a lawsuit, a civil lawsuit that really doesn't pertain right to this particular investigation. But the FBI we are told, now has this deposition. That was exclusively obtained by CNN. We're hearing this from two different sources that the FBI is looking at this.

They're trying to build a profile. You heard the frustration in the sheriff's voice. So, they're trying to set into the mind of this gunman.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) LAH (voice-over): Before the gunman unleashed his murderous assault on an innocent concert crowd, he called himself the biggest video poker player in the world, gambling up to a million dollars in a single night, overnight, sleeping during the day, prescribed valium for anxiousness. These are the killers own words as he testified in 2013 in this lawsuit against The Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas, where he slipped in the walk way.

[20:05:02] He says he moved from Las Vegas casino to casino, at one point staying maybe upwards of three weeks out of a month. A high roller, his hotel stays were comped 95 percent of the time.

Bets ranged from 100 to 150 each time I pushed the button. When he says on a given night, he'll bet a million dollars, an attorney replies, that's a lot of money. No, it's not.

He called video poker a game of discipline, at times appearing condescending and sarcastic as he explains to his attorney why he stays sober while gambling. At the stakes, I play you want to have all your wits about you.

The gunman's home in Mesquite, Nevada, suggests an upper middle class retired life. For easy access to a doctor, he paid a yearly fee to Nevada internist, Dr. Steven Winkler. He says Winker prescribed him valium. Why? It's for anxiousness.

Rage, aggressiveness and irritability are among the possible side effects of taking valium, according to the manufacturing to the drug.

"The Las Vegas Review Journal" reported that Dr. Winkler prescribed him valium in June of this year. CNN could not independently confirm that information.

Despite all the claims about his high-rolling ways, he testified on the day he fell in The Cosmopolitan he wore his typical clothing, saying, I always wear black Nike sweatpants that are nylon or polyester. On his feet, black flip-flops that he wore 98 percent of the time.

Life was better before the economic meltdown, he testified, saying Vegas casinos comped less and less, meaning he visited Sin City less.

What happened to the economy in 2007, he said? It tanked. Las Vegas went into the gutter with a lot of other things. They quit giving away freebies. It just wasn't worth coming out here as often.


COOPER: In the deposition, I understand that the killer was asked about his mental health in addition to the medicine. What did he say?

LAH: He did talk -- he was asked a handful of times about his mental illness, if any existed. Did he have any history of it? Was there any family history of mental illness? Were there any addictions? And he always said, no, Anderson. We should point out the doctor that we did mention, this Las Vegas

area doctor, we did reach out to him via e-mail and cell and he did not respond to any of our requests to speak to us.

COOPER: All right. Kyung Lah, thanks very much.

I want to go over that updated timeline one more time. At 9:59, the security guard now authorities say was shot by the gunman. At 10:05, the first shots were fired on the crowd by the gunman. He fired the last shots at 10:15 p.m. Authorities breached the room at 11:20, though law enforcement had arrived sooner.

Joining us now is former FBI profiler Mary Ellen O'Toole, also former senior FBI and CIA official Phil Mudd, and retired supervisor, special agent, James Gagliano.

James, I think I was on the air with you probably on Wednesday from Las Vegas when there was a press conference from law enforcement Wednesday night, and they sort of gave this timeline as saying, it seemed to indicate it was the arrival by the security guard and then law enforcement that changed this from a shooting by this gunman out into the crowd to having it be focused on the security guard and law enforcement. That now seems to not be the case.

So, there's a lot of questions this raises about did law enforcement know shots had been fired on this floor at the security guard, because the security guard apparently radioed in to hotel security to let them know what happened. Were police aware of that before the shooting into the crowd began? And also what was it that made the shooter stop shooting out the window?

JAMES GAGLIANO, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Anderson, in investigation, you know, the subject or the perpetrator, the bad guys, always presented the variables. From the law enforcement end, we have to get it right and we have to provide the constant.

And listen, I'm not critical of the Las Vegas Police Department or the Las Vegas Sheriff's Department because of the chaos and fog of war and the things that happened during these times of incidents. I've been involved in a number of them, and I know it's hard to get things perfectly right, right away.

But this is why, I think, and I'm going to be a little critical here. This is why I suggest there should have been a little bit more caution, a little bit more reticent as far as what was shared.

Yes, the public has a right to know. Yes, we want to put things out that will help the police solve the crime or figure out a motive in this instance, but sometimes, putting out too much information or getting things wrong like the timeline, again, no duplicity on the part of the police. I don't think that this was a concerted effect on their part to get it wrong.

But that is a huge change in the timeline, Anderson, when we know now that the security guard was fired upon six minutes before Paddock fired into the crowd. That changes everything. And then what was it that actually caused him to stop firing?

[20:10:00] We all believe that it was because he was disturbed by the security guard and began to prepare for the advance of the police. And now we know that wasn't the case. A lot more questions than answers.

COOPER: Yes. Phil, I mean, I remember you saying in the early days after this, you're always very skeptical of the initial reports, of the reports by law enforcement, you know, describing what happened for several days because just of the confusion. What do you make of this change in timeline?

PHIL MUDD, FORMER CIA COUNTERTERRORISM OFFICIAL: This doesn't mean a lot to me, Anderson. I'm less critical than James.

Look, we're talking about 360 seconds. We're talking about the time difference between six minutes and seven minutes. I think the timeline still holds true from a general perspective. That is this individual decided he wanted to shoot on the crowd.

He saw one person come down the corridor. He shot that person -- assuming this timeline, this sort of revised timeline is correct. I'm not sure that's true. And then he had an air gap where he could return to the windows and shoot.

I don't think this is tremendously significant. The bottom line is the media here wants answers within 24 hours, 48 hours, 72 hours. The sheriff tried to provide those timelines and he was 360 seconds off. In my world, that doesn't mean a lot, Anderson. It's not a big deal.

COOPER: Mary Ellen, what do you make of the fact that, you know, we still don't seem to have any clear motive for this attack?

MARY ELLEN O'TOOLE, FORMER FBI PROFILER: Yes. What that suggests to me is that the trigger was not external, that it was internal. It was something that he had been thinking about for a long time. It wasn't because someone did something to him or insulted him. The plan came, emanated from him and it was controlled by him. It wasn't the result of somebody aggravating him.

And that may be the reason that we're finding it so very difficult to find that external trigger and we do have criminal behavior that is not triggered by some external problem or incident. I mean, it happens all the time. This was certainly the biggest, most sensational crime that we've seen in so long, but I do think it was something that we had thinking about for many years.

Phil, I mean, the sheriff saying they've uncovered more than 200 times that the shooter was traveling through Las Vegas, was never seen with anyone else. Does seem to stand in contrast with what the sheriff said last week that he didn't think this could be carried out by just one person alone, maybe doesn't stand in contrast, but it's interesting that they have yet, according to law enforcement, have seen him with anybody else.

MUDD: That's not a contrast to me, Anderson. I understand what he's saying. That is when you go down the road in this investigation, your fist response has to be before we assume that nobody else is involved, we have to look at every avenue. That's sort of the default.

This is a curious case. Let's go through three stages. Stage one is chaos. A day or two in this sort of fog of war, what happened here?

Stage two is acquisition of data. That is interviews with people like friends and family, the girlfriend, acquisition of data. And you're going to assume in that acquisition of data and in those interviews, you're going to find a motive, politics, sex, money.

Now we're in stage three and we're realizing maybe the motive was some internal demon that this individual might have reacted to after decades of absorbing whatever that internal demon was. That's really difficult to figure out and I think that might be where we're sort of going now, Anderson, internal demons, not an external focus.

COOPER: James, the shooter had some sort of protective gear in the room. Law enforcement hasn't gone into detail of what it was. It would be interesting to see what, you know, if it's a Kevlar vest, what level of Kevlar vest is it. Is it the kind that a street police officer would wear, that's only good for handguns? Is it something that has ceramic plates in it, which might, you know, to protect against rifle fire?

And I guess my interest in that is whether this was for some sort of close up, you know, involvement with law enforcement or whether he thought he was vulnerable to a longer shot.

GAGLIANO: Sure, Anderson. Just to help your viewers out, so there's a number of different levels for Kevlar vest. There's a 3, 3A, 4 and the differentiation between them is the amount of fabric that's compressed, that's put together, that basically just slows down the T- factor, the time that the bullet strikes the vest before it can get to human tissue.

Now, if there had been ceramic plates in or steel plates, that's also possible. We see those overseas. I'm not sure. The information hasn't come out on that yet.

I'm struck by the news earlier, I guess late yesterday or earlier today about the computations he was doing on trajectory. So we know he was doing physics computations that a fire support officer would do in the military. You know, worrying about the properties of matter and energy and how he had to aim his weapons to make sure that they rained fire down on the crowd below 500 meters away.

This was planned with military style precision. Again, I'm not critical for the police on their response.

[20:15:01] They were dealing with a committed killer who had gone to great lengths to kill as many people as possible. I'm just hoping going forward with the police we slow down what we're releasing, make sure we get it right, so that we don't cause people to go off in a different direction, to make sure that the public is informed.

COOPER: Yes, I want to thank everybody.

Coming up next, the senator who says the president's words and actions could lead to World War III, a respected Republican senator. See what else he says and why the White House is attacking him for all things tweeting.

And later, the congressman who says we got it all about those white supremacists and neo-Nazis in Charlottesville. It's all a left wing plot, a false flag operation, according to a congressman, sitting congressman. We're keeping him honest, ahead.


COOPER: Tonight, the president and the criticism of him by a powerful Republican senator. Now, it would be easy to portray this story as just a typical Washington war of words, or political food fight.

But it's important to note the stunning nature of what is actually happening right now between the president and Republican Senator Bob Corker, the chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, a man not given to exaggeration or loose talk, a man who is now saying that President Trump, commander-in-chief of the most powerful military on earth, could be putting the country, quote, on the path to World War III.

And that's not all Senator Bob Corker told "The New York Times" over the weekend about the man he once campaigned for and praised at the time for his newfound maturity and subtle grasp of foreign policy.

[20:20:02] In a 25-minute phone with the paper, Senator Corker said the president is treating his office, quote, like a reality show. He went on to say: I know for a fact that every single day at the White House, it's a situation of trying to contain him.

Senator Corker also telling "The Times", quote, he concerns me, and said, he would have to concern anyone who cares about our nation. Corker said the vast majority of his fellow Republicans agree with his assessment. You may remember a few weeks ago, Chairman Corker criticized the president's handling of the Charlottesville protests.


SEN. BOB CORKER (R), TENNESSEE: The president has not yet -- has not yet been able to demonstrate the stability nor some of the competence that he needs to demonstrate in order to be successful. He also recently has not demonstrated that he understands the character of this nation.


COOPER: Well, apparently stunned by that and comments by the senator suggesting the top cabinet members were the only thing preventing chaos, the president seemed to simmer awhile, and then this weekend, he took to Twitter after Chairman Corker announced he wouldn't be running for reelection. Quote: Senator Bob Corker begged me to endorse him for re-election in

Tennessee. I said no and he dropped out, said he could not win without my endorsement. He also wanted to be secretary of state. I said, no, thanks. He is also largely responsibility for the horrendous Iran deal.

The president capped it off with: Hence, I would fully expect Corker to be a negative voice and stand in the way of our great agenda. Didn't have the guts to run.

Well, Senator Corker responded with this. Quote: It's a shame the White House has become an adult day-care center. Someone obviously missed their shift this morning.

Then he spoke with "The Times" detailing four instances in which the president had, according to Corker, encouraged him to run. He lamented that the president tweets things that simply are not true, telling "The Times", you know he does it. Every one knows he does it. But he does.

He did not call the president unfit for office, but it's hard to read his remarks any other way.

And this morning, appearing on "Fox and Friends", White House adviser Kellyanne Conway had this to say when host Brian Kilmeade called Senator Corker's tweet demeaning.


KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: Well, it is. And world leaders see that. We've all worked with Senator Corker over the years. We thank him for his service, but I find tweets like this to be incredibly irresponsible. It adds to the insulting that the mainstream media and the president's detractors almost a year after this election, they still can't accept the election results. It adds to their ability and their cover to speak about a president of the United States, the president of the United States in ways that no president should be talked about.


COOPER: She finds tweets like Senator Bob Corker's, quote, incredibly irresponsible, saying world leaders see it.

Let's just let that sink in for a moment. Bob Corker's tweets are incredibly irresponsible and she is concerned that world leaders see it. A tweet incredibly irresponsible.

Let me just remind you, she works for the president of the United States who tweets in the predawn hours and all throughout the day, seemingly whatever pops into his mind, whether those things are true or not. But with a straight face, she now says that Senator Corker is the incredibly irresponsible one.

Does she hold the president to the same criticism concern that world leaders are watching? Well, no, she doesn't nor do many people in the president's orbit.


CONWAY: Donald Trump social media platform is a very powerful way for him to communicate with people.

SEAN SPICER, FORMER WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: He has this following of over 45-plus-million people that follow him on social media, that he could have a direct conversation.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It is a very effective form of communication. I'm not unproud of it to be honest with you.

JASON MILLER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENATOR: I like the fact that President-elect Trump feels free to go and tweet and get his views out there and talk directly to people.

NEWT GINGRICH (R), FORMER HOUSE SPEAKER: He's able very quickly over and over again to set the agenda.

CONWAY: It's a great way for him, Chris, to take his message directly to people, cut through the noise or the silence, whatever the case may be.

SPICER: When he tweets, he gets results.

CONWAY: I think a lot of the mainstream media don't like it because he's cutting out the middle man. It's what I call the democratization of information, meaning you don't have to wait for the evening news to tell you what happened that day.

TRUMP: Why wouldn't I use it? Why -- if I have all these millions of people and it's a great way to get a message out.


COOPER: So, it's a good thing for a president to attack his own cabinet members or Republican leaders when he's angry at them on Twitter. It's a good thing the president tweets that the secretary of state is wasting his time trying to prevent a war with North Korea, the very moment that his secretary of state is, you know, trying to prevent a war of North Korea. It's a good thing for him to call the leader of North Korea on Twitter rocket man, later, little rocket man. It's a good thing for the president to tweet: sorry, but only one thing will work when it comes to North Korea.

All that is good according to Kellyanne Conway and others, but when it's not her boss doing it, it's incredibly irresponsible. This has been another profile in courage.

We're learning the president is not through yet with Senator Corker as well as how other people around the president see all this. Also, "The New York Times" has just released audio from their interview with the senator.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP) CORKER: One of the reasons that I've supported Mattis and Tillerson and Kelly last week is, again, as long as there's people like that around him who are able to talk him down, you know, when he gets spun up, you know, calm him down and continue to work with him before a decision is made.

I think we'll be fine. I don't -- I do worry that these -- sometimes I feel like he's on a reality show of some kind, you know, when he's talking about these big foreign policy issues. And, you know, he doesn't realize that, you know, that we could be heading towards World War III.


COOPER: Well, joining us now is Jonathan Martin, "The Times" reporter sharing a byline on the Corker story, and CNN chief political analyst, Gloria Borger.

Jonathan, under the heading of this ain't over, where might this go from here? Because again, this is -- I mean, this is just not your average Washington feud.

JONATHA MARTIN, NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, NEW YORK TIMES: No, it's not. And you just played an excerpt that I was struck by in talking to the senator yesterday, basically saying, America will be OK and the world will be OK as long as there's adult supervision in the White House, mentioning Chief of Staff John Kelly, Jim Mattis, the defense secretary, by name in that clip that you played. He'd say, we're going to be OK provisionally as long as the adults are still there. That's extraordinary to have somebody of Senator Corker's status saying that.

Putting that side for the moment and looking ahead, I think the sort of immediate implications here revolve around the issue of tax cuts, and some kind of a tax reform. This is the big ticket item, Anderson, that the folks down here in the GOP want to get done. They need a victory going into the midterms. That is the priority right now.

And what the president has done, in talking to sources today, is he has imperiled this prospect. And if you think about how tight the majority is in the Senate, it's only two seats. They can only afford to lose two senators and still pass any major bill, if you attack Bob Corker like the president did and you have those three Republicans, John McCain, Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins, who oppose the Obamacare repeal, you've now basically got four free agents who are not beholden to this president who are basically immune to this president's persuasion, that could spell trouble for a big tax cut bill.


And, Gloria, I mean, to those who say, well, look, Senator Corker didn't speak out like this until he was free from the political pressures of running re-election -- does that give his criticism of the president, which again is blistering, does it give it less resonance? GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, it gives it less resonance clearly to Trump supporters, people like Kellyanne Conway, I'm sure, some people inside the White House, but not to people inside the Senate, which is what Jonathan is talking about, which is people inside the Senate who are going to have to deal with this president, who privately -- and I've spoken to a couple of them today -- agree with Bob Corker, but they're afraid to say it publicly because they're going to have to deal with the president again in the future.

And let me add one other thing. I don't think this necessarily means that Senator Corker is going to vote against Donald Trump in any kind of a knee jerk way, because he has been in the past kind of a supporter of Trump's in some ways. But it does mean that he's going to continue to speak out more and make a lot of his colleagues pretty uncomfortable as he does it.

COOPER: Well, also, Jonathan, I mean, the idea that according to Corker nearly every Senate Republican agrees with him.

MARTIN: Right.

BORGER: Right.

COOPER: That's -- I mean, that's -- I don't know if it's terrifying or -- I mean, it's stunning.

MARTIN: Well, it's revealing is what it is. And, you know, I was so struck by that part of the conversation too. And what he said was, now, if you print that, Jonathan, and you go and ask them, some of them will say no, no, no, that's not true, but basically the majority of our caucus will say that. But they actually are with me.

I mean, that is inviting the press corps next week when the Senate is back in session to ask all 52 Republican senators, really, folks, do you not agree with Senator Corker or are you just saying that for public consumption?

Because all of us who work in Washington have had conversation privately with them and they roll their eyes at President Trump, but they won't do it publicly.

BORGER: And they're not going to say it.

MARTIN: Right. Because those who have to face the voters again are facing a primary electorate, either 2018 or 2020, where most of the conservatives are still with this President Trump. So, they have to guard what they say publicly.

COOPER: Although, Gloria, the message to a lot of them is, you know, the president's loyalty only goes so far.

BORGER: Right. The president is loyal to himself and to his voters, and that is exactly what his former senior adviser, Steve Bannon, is now trying to do on the outside. He's going to run candidates against 15 incumbents who are Republican because what he wants are Trump supporters, not the establishment Republicans who are in the Senate, who don't like the president. Bob Corker just told us that and we already knew that, but he said it out loud. So --

COOPER: Amazing. Jonathan Martin, incredible reporting. Gloria Borger, thanks so much.


Next what drives the president to carry a grudge so far for so long even if it hurts him? Or his agenda? We'll ask the man who wrote "The Art of the Deal", Tony Schwartz as well as Maggie Haberman who's remark will tell him for given the president to talk.


COOPER: A president seemingly cannot resist slapping someone down on Twitter even if that someone can hold his political fate in his hands. A president who can't let or perceive personal slide go even when it concerns the health and well-being of disaster victims.

Sounds like something no one seen before except Tony Schwartz has, he wrote "The Art of the Deal" as well as an essay for the new collection "The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President". He's known Donald Trump for decades. Also with me White House correspondent of the New York Times and political analyst Maggie Habermann who knows the president better than most reporters said the very least.

I mean Maggie, the president does seem to have this habit, particularly on weekends of getting on the Twitter machine and going for it.

MAGGIE HABERMAN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, it's usually times when he's isolated either by himself in the residence for what ever reason or if he's at work, but when there are fewer people around or fewer activities. In this case it's not clear precisely what set him off, but most people in the west wing think it was in combination of watching of Fox News on Sunday when there was some reference to Corker and Tillerson. And there was a front page "Washington Post" story about the budget which Corker has also been involved with.

But it could be almost anything as you know. He can have a side bar with someone and something sets him off.

[20:35:02] There are all these strategies that have gone into place over nine months to try to figure out how best to manage him. And I think that John Kelly has come up with some but it's, you know, as we have seen even when he controls the inputs and information flow, you can't control everything.

COOPER: You know, one of the things Tony that Corker said with the "Times" was that there isn't a strategy with Trump of, you know, he's going to do the play, the madman, and everybody else is the, you know, the straight guy, that it's not the good cop bad cop strategy. It's just the way -- it's impulsive. Do you think he -- is there a strategy on the Twitter he used that he needs to distract from things that aren't working out by tweeting about the NFL or whatever it is? Or do you think it's purely impulsive realtime roar (ph) shock test, of what's happening in his head?

TONY SCHWARTZ, GHOSTWRITER, "THE ART OF THE DEAL": The latter. I do that it's a very clear neuro chemical thing that's going on. So when he is calm and relaxed like all of us, I know you were out meditating this weekend.


SCHWARTZ: When he's in that state he's not going to be as reactive, he's not going to be as impulsive. As soon as he starts to feel attacked, as soon as he starts to feel threat, then he moves from the prefrontal cortex into the amygdala and he reacts, he's emotional and what happens in that fight or flight state is that your prefrontal cortex, your capacity to think logically shuts down. So, he's no longer thinking he's just responding as if he were under attack. Literally his life were under attack.

COOPER: Which does sort of back up what Corker has been saying that its -- these other people around, that Corker's confidence in -- you know, in Mattis and Kelly, McMaster sort of, I mean lack of a better term, adults.

HABERMAN: Right, I mean look Corker, what was remarkable about Corker was not to somebody was saying this, because we have heard people saying versions of this in Washington, in Congress, outside of Congress for months now. What was amazing was that you had a sitting senator, prominent member of the president's own party saying this out loud, saying it on the record. I mean he just sort of laid bare everything that you hear privately for a very long time. From numbers of Congressional leadership and both sides.

It is true that there is a sense of -- in Washington, people sort of protecting the Republic from the president. And I think the president -- some of president's advisers take great issue with that. But it is -- it is clear that there is not some to your point, there's been this big debate about what or there's a grander strategy or not, and we saw this everyday during the campaign, there's not a master plan. He's surviving certain increments of time, and --


COOPER: Tony about Twitter, I mean when you're in your deal, there wasn't Twitter. So how did he deal with those impulses? Was getting on the phone and?

SCHWARTZ: Yes, absolutely. He got on the phone, and he ranted and raved. And then he got off the phone, and then ranted and raved some more. But I think there's a bigger issue here. I think the issue raised by Corker's last comment which is, he is -- we're in an imminent World War III is not to be trifled with. He is sitting there with the capacity to press that nuclear code --

COOPER: He didn't say imminent I think he said, you know, leading.

SCHWARTZ: I'm going to say imminent --

COOPER: Right.

SCHWARTZ: -- because, of the very reason we're just discussing which is, as the circle closes on Trump, as he feels under more threat, the need to react, the likelihood that he's in that reactive fight or flight state rises. And his ability act totally irrationally is higher than it's ever been. So were and about to why we need to understand, that's why this book, you know, of this 27 psychiatrist, that dangerous case is so critical because it really gives you a sense of what's going on inside the brain of this guy.

COOPER: What's interesting too about Twitter is that, you know, for all of Kellyanne Conway and those folks saying, you know, it's a great way to cut through the clutter, for him to get a direct message out. It is the only time I think in presidential history that we have a minute-to-minute instant look into what is in the president's head. And usually presidents are completely, you know, in a bubble and for better or worse, you know, protected. Not just physically but, you know, their impulses are protected. It's not until the Nixon tapes come decades later that you hear the ranting and ravings with President Trump its realtime.

HABERMAN: Yes, this is my colleague Peter Baker's point repeatedly, is just that essentially is like having the Nixon tapes live. There are a lot of really good arguments about why the president should not be -- why this president or any president should not be expressing themselves on Twitter this way unfettered.

But for those us who are in this business for the general public, I would argue there is a real service to this, there are also serious down sides in terms of other people not understanding how to read him in terms of -- look I mean, well Corker said is true in terms of what he believes and in terms of some of his colleagues believe. There's a danger into -- and what Corker said too in terms of -- like a lot of this comes down to how the rest of the world is trying to figure out Donald Trump.

[20:40:03] And so people have invested a lot in the idea that there must be some grand plan here, because without that there's a lot of chaos theory that I think scares people. But the reality is, you still get to see where he is at any given moment.

COOPER: One of the things also kind of the Corker said, he said, I don't know why the president tweets out things that are not true. You know he does it, everyone knows he does it, but he does.

I mean it's certainly kind of thing that, it's one thing for him to have done it as a businessman, to just say things, you know, make up stuff. But it's at a different level obviously you would think as president.

SCHWARTZ: I just think that when he's in that aroused state, when he is feeling under threat, he makes no distinction between true and not true. In that moment he believes it's true. You take what he said about Corker and it's almost exactly the reverse is true. But in that moment he's saying to himself, this guy, he wouldn't listen to me, you know, he didn't get it. So he absolutely believed it in that moment. And it doesn't matter because he must mobilize all resources necessary to fight off the enemy in that moment. So that's what's scary is that he experiences the world as a global threat to him.

Meanwhile, he's holding us, and I really believe this, he is holding America hostage right now. He's holding a hostage to his own impulsivity. And we know that if we -- if it goes this way or it goes that way, the consequences could be literally millions of deaths.

COOPER: All right Tony Schwartz, appreciate it, Maggie Haberman as well.

Up next, another white supremacist really in Charlottesville this past weekend. And something else caught our attention, one of the most outrageous theories you'll hear about who organized the rally, the kill (ph) had their higher. We'll you which seating member of Congress, someone actually in Congress right now is pushing it.


COOPER: A white nationalist march yet again this past weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Once again chanted, you will not replace us. Last time it was Jews will not replace us. Once again a tiki torch rally. This gathering smaller than the one in August which results of course of the death of 32-year-old Heather Heyer was killed when a man plowed his vehicle into a crowd protesting a white supremacist.

[20:45:09] At discussing as both rallies where -- there is something else that caught our eye when it posted this past Friday. It's the claimed that the August protest the one that killed Miss Heyer was some sort of a left wing plot. Now who we might ask would something too offensive in discussing is that some shock jock radio personality maybe, no an elective representative who's serving right now in the U.S. Congress. Here is two term Arizona Congressman Paul Gosar. Now he's -- here's exactly what the congressman said to Vice News correspondent Elle Reeve.


REP. PAUL GOSAR, (R) ARIZONA: Let's look at the person that actually started the rally. Its come to our attention that this is the person from occupy (ph) Wall Street, there was an Obama sympathizers. So, wait a minute be careful on where you start taking these people to. And look at the background. George Soros is one of those people that actually helps -- you know, back these individuals. Who is he? I think he's from Hungary. I think he was Jewish and I think he turned in he's own people to the Nazis. They're careful of where we go with those.

ELLE REEVE, VICE NEWS TONIGHT CORRESPONDENT: Do you think George Soros funded the Neo-Nazis who march in Charlottesville?

GOSAR: Well it'll be interesting to find out. (END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Again, that was Republican Arizona Congressman Paul Gosar. This man, keeping them honest, does he have proof, no, nothing. In other words it's a false flag. He's spreading an insulting and discussing conspiracy theory one that's been swiftly debunked by many. We asked Congressman Gosar to come on the program tonight, his office declined. We told him it's open invitation, we got no reply.

These conspiracy theories were first spread by radio talk show host Alex Jones, the rally in August was organized by Jason Kesler who said he voted for President Obama and attended one occupier then. But he also says he became disenchanted with the Obama administration. And addition to organizing that hateful Charlottesville rally has according to Vice News, spend time on YouTube rally against what he called white genocide. He's certainly a turner.

As for billionaire investor George Soros who does back liberal causes, a spokeswoman for his foundation issue the statement to Vice News, a recent part, "George Soros survived the Nazi occupation of Hungary and he has spent his life supporting efforts to ensure that such terrifying authoritarianism never takes root again. He was 14 years old when the war ended. He did not collaborate with the Nazis. He did not help round up people. He did not confiscate anybody's property."

Joining me now is Elle Reeve, she is the Vice News reporter who did that interview with Congressman Gosar and who was also at the original rally in Charlottesville who did such amazing reporting there. Does it make any -- I mean when this Congressman says that to you. I mean you were at the original rally, does it make any sense to you what he's saying?

REEVE: Oh no of course not. Some of the people involved in that rally have track records going back five or 10 years. The (INAUDIBLE) as they're non-profits are available online, you can look at who's funding them. They absolutely believe what they say. I presented that to them, I said I've talked to these people, they don't sound like leftis. And he just smirked at me.

COOPER: The idea also that -- the way the congressman is saying is like, oh we're learning this or, you know, we're finding this out, as if it's sort of the full weight of his office or the U.S. Congress when in fact it seems like he's just getting stuff from Alex Jones.

REEVE: That seems to be where the news is coming from. Alex Jones claim to have sources all throughout the government. But George Soros did not fund these people what he's saying g is not true.

COOPER: The -- just to be clear, the point of your interview with him it wasn't even about Charlottesville right?


COOPER: So he just brought this up? REEVE: Right, yes. We were interviewing him about a constituent who's suing him for blocking her on Facebook. It's an interesting First Amendment case, and so we ask him, why block these people. He tried to draw a line between the attention of assassination of Steve Scalise and hateful or profane comments on Facebook. And he kept bringing up Antifa. So finally I was like Antifa's on the news because of a white supremacist rally, and that's when he launched into this.

COOPER: And -- I mean have you seen any of this Republican colleague speaking out against his comments?

REEVE: No, I have not.

COOPER: So you had there's -- to your knowledge no one has been saying this is absurd, this is offensive.

REEVE: Nothing that I've seen. Another Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has accused the protesters there being civil war reenactivists who were tricked by someone. That's all I've seen.

COOPER: Elle Reeve, it's great to have you on again, thank you very much.

REEVE: Thanks.


When we come back a dust off between First Lady Melania Trump and the president's first wife Ivana, even for this White House, this is a bizarre turn of events.


[20:52:17] COOPER: It's an argument that would seem right at home on the "Real Housewives of Washington" except that series ended seasons ago. President Trump's first and third wives are in broiled in a public spat. That after the first wife Ivana called herself the first lady in an interview today. The actual First Lady Melania Trump and felt moved to put out a statement of her own and just a reminder, this all actually happened. Our Randi Kaye breaks it down.



RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The shot across the bow came from Ivana Trump on "Good Morning America" this morning.

IVANA TRUMP, FORMER WIFE OF DONALD TRUMP: I have the direct numbers to White House but I no really want to call him there because Melania is there and I don't want to cause any kind of jealousy or something like that, because I'm basically first Trump wife, OK. I'm first lady.

KAYE (voice-over): As you might imagine, Ivana calling herself the first lady didn't sit so well with the real first lady. In a tersely worded statement, First Lady Melania Trump fired back through her spokesperson. "Mrs. Trump has made the White House a home for Barron and the president. She loves living in Washington, D.C., and is honored by her role as first lady of the United States. She plans to use her title and role to help children, not sell books."

The statement went on to say, "There is clearly no substance to this statement from an ex. This is unfortunately only attention-seeking and self-serving noise." That statement certainly a different tone than we heard from Melania Trump back in 2005.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know his exes?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Get along with them?

M. TRUMP: I don't see them much. I don't -- you know, we don't see them --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They were at the wedding though.

KAYE (voice-over): Ivana Trump and Donald Trump met more than four decades ago and were married eight months later. She is the mother of the president's three eldest children, Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric who would later become his second wife. Over the weekend, Ivana told CBS she doesn't speak to Marla Maples but that she gets along with Melania Trump, explaining her reasoning this way.

I. TRUMP: Ivana's nobody and Ivana his first lady.

KAYE (voice-over): First lady, a title Ivana took for herself just 24 hours later during another network interview. Ivana's shot at first lady ended when her marriage to Donald Trump ended. But as she tells it, she did have a chance at an ambassadorship.

I. TRUMP: I was just offered to be American ambassador to Czech Republic. And Donald told me said, Ivana, if you want it, I give it to you. But I like my freedom, OK. Why would I go and say bye-bye to Miami in the winter, bye-bye to San Tropez in summer? And bye-bye to spring and fall in New York. I have the perfect life.

[20:55:09] KAYE (voice-over): The perfect life far from the east wing of the White House.

Randi Kaye, CNN, New York.


COOPER: So to really understand what is going on here, I had to call in reinforcements. My friend, Andy Cohen, who is executive producer of the "Real Housewives" franchise as well as host of all these "Real Housewives" reunion. Here's part of that conversation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ANDY COHEN, EXECUTIVE PRODUCE, REAL HOUSEWIVES: I was watching this play out today and just thought, you know what, and I would like to be, you know, I'm here on CNN, open invitation to the first lady, to the honorary first lady Ivana Trump. I'd like to get Marla Maples in there. I think she maybe has unresolved issues. And I feel it would be great to have Ivanka Trump there as well. I will set up two couches, get this going, and just put me in the game, I can do this.


COOPER: We're going have more of my conversation with Andy at the 9:00 hour including tips from Andy's "Housewives" playbook.

Up next the escalating fight between the president and the sitting Republican senator, a powerful sitting Republican senator who says the president is putting the country at risk of World War III.