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Trump Jr. WikiLeaks Exchanged Private Messages During 2016 Presidential Campaign; Fifth Accuser Comes Forward Against Roy Moore. Aired 11-Midnight ET
Aired November 13, 2017 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[23:00:56] DON LEMON, CNN TONIGHT NEWS SHOW HOST: This is "CNN tonight." I'm Don Lemon. It is almost 11:01 here on the east coast. And we're live with breaking news tonight. New revelations that Donald Trump, Jr. and WikiLeaks exchanged private messages during the campaign last year. What it means for the Russia investigation.
Plus a fifth accusers comes forward insisting that Roy Moore sexually assaulted her when she was just 16 years-old. Beverly Young Nelson says Roy Moore offered her a ride home one night from the restaurant she worked while in high school.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BEVERLY YOUNG NELSON, ROY MOORE ACCUSER: He reached over and began groping me and putting his hands on my breasts. I tried opening the car door to leave, but he reached over and locked it so I couldn't get out. I tried biting him off, yelling for him to stop. But instead stopping he began squeezing my neck attempting to force my head onto his crotch. He was also trying to pull my shirt off. I thought that he was going to rape me. I was twisting and struggling and begging him to stop. But he look said at me and told me -- he said you're just a child. And he said I am the district attorney of Etowah County. And if you tell anybody about this, no one will ever believe you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Roy Moore calls the accusation absolutely false and says he doesn't know Beverly Young Nelson. But she produced her high school yearbook showing that Moore wrote a note in it wishing her a Merry Christmas. It was Christmas 1977 and signing it love, Roy Moore, da. Said he didn't know about the restaurant. And the restaurant's name is on his signature. Here to discuss -- there it is right there, old hickory house. Here to discuss now political commentators Symone Sander, Alice Stewart and Amanda Carpenter. Good evening, thank you all so much for joining us. Alice, I'm going to start with you tonight. Another woman is accusing Roy Moore of sexual assault. But Moore is defiant. He says the accusations are false. But this latest accuser like others voted for Trump. Why would she go along with a Democratic plot to take down a GOP senate candidate? Why would she go through all of this? ALICE STEWART, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: This has nothing to do with
politics. This has everything to do with doing the right things for the right reasons. Look, this is the fifth person we heard from in this case where the accusations are more credible than the denials. And she clearly was having a difficult, difficult time. She clearly was not doing this for political reasons. She was not doing it for any vendetta. She was doing it as she said because four other women had the courage and had the bravery to come forward and make these situations known, make this -- alert the people of Alabama before they went to the voting booth what happened to them. I believe them. I believe each and every one of them. And I think it is important that more people take to heart what they are saying, and shame on anyone who tries to impugn the character or the integrity of these women. And I applaud Paula, the woman you just spoke with for saying these people who do this no longer have the benefit of our silence. And I applaud each and every one of them for coming forward and their bravery. And shame on anyone who says this is about politics. This is about doing the right thing for the right reason.
LEMON: Alice, have you changed your mind since this came out?
STEWART: I have. When this first came out I wanted to give the Judge the benefit of the doubt. I said let's wait, let's hear him out. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt. It took one interview for him to talk about this and for him to have the opportunity to categorically deny that he did these. He didn't do that. He said, well, that is not characteristic of my behavior. That is not a denial. That did not give me the comfort that I needed to cast a shadow of a doubt on what these women are claiming. I believe these accusers.
[23:05:19] I think it is important for us to call for him to step aside, because it is the right thing to do as a Party. This is not about a political outcome. This is about principles. This is about character, and this is about the people of Alabama having someone to represent them in the U.S. Senate that they can be proud of.
LEMON: Symone, do you think the people of Alabama are listening to this? You think they're in step with Alice?
SYMONE SANDERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: On some levels some people in Alabama are absolutely listening. But unfortunately there are still some people who whether they believe Roy Moore or not are still talking about voting for him. And I think that is why it's important for voters who would not probably not come out on for a special election on Tuesday to come out and if they believe this is wrong, and cast their vote for Doug Jones in this race and not Roy Moore. I love that a number of prominent Republicans have come out and said Roy Moore needs to step aside. But there are tangible things that the Republican National Committee can do in this instance. They can pull their support for Alabama. They can take their staffers out of working for the special election. And I haven't seen any actual tangible steps being taken yet. So to me some of this sounds like hip service.
LEMON: I've got to ask you, Amanda, this is growing list of Republican Senators who say Roy Moore should withdraw from the Alabama race. Look at that. That is a lot of them. And here's what Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republican are saying about the allegations now, watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he should step aside.
SEN PAT TOOMEY, (R) PENNSYLVANIA: I think the accusations have more credibility than the denial. I think it would be best if Roy would just step aside.
SEN TIM SCOTT, (R) SOUTH CAROLINA: Well, certainly the allegations are very, very strong. The denial was not as strong as the allegations.
SEN JOHN COMYN, (R) TEXAS: They're very disturbing. That is why I believe it was appropriate for me to withdraw my endorsement.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: That was different than last week, Amanda, when we were discussing this.
AMANDA CARPENTER, POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yeah, because he had the disaster interviewing with Sean Hannity where he did not categorically deny the allegations. I think Republicans need to be stronger. I think they need to say I will not endorse you. If you continue to run and you win, we will vote to expel you. Period, the end. But I have to get something off my chest Don, because I saw a woman come forward today and put her name and story on the record a woman did that on "the Washington Post," Paula, the woman you had on earlier is putting her name and credibility on the record and again, Roy Moore said this is witch-hunt and he is going to sue "the Washington Post" because he is being smeared. Well, Roy Moore I have a message for you. It's time to put up or shut up cowboy, because we all know what you are doing. You're trying to deflect questions and try to come up with excuses you do not have. I wish people would put reporting on people who threaten legal action, we should not even talk about it until you file those papers. I want Roy Moore to stop smearing these women by saying he is going to make all this go away with a lawsuit until he files those papers.
SANDERS: I'm here with Amanda, tonight.
LEMON: Listen I got to say this. OK. I have the note here where she said anything we talk about today, Don, you're absolutely free to share. It's not off-the-record. I spoke to her almost two hours on a phone today, and she said similar, Amanda, to what she said. She scolded the media and scolded me said, shame on you, Don, and if you allow people onto undermine the credibility of these women. It is orchestrated and until they file something or show some fact as to what they're saying, they should not be heard, because they have no proof. And these women are showing proof and they're showing courage. So she is saying similar to what you're saying. What's going on here? CARPENTER: I don't know. I'm surprised I haven't heard people say
that yet. But I just imagine myself being a woman who is coming forward and putting, if I was in that position, going on camera crying and then Roy Moore coming on and saying I'm going to sue somebody. Well, where is it? Let everyone have access to your argument. I don't think he has one, but how many times do we see people who get in trouble say I'm going to file a lawsuit. They never do. It's such a convenient excuse, and it's used so they can buy time, they can convince their supporters they do have an argument without ever making one.
LEMON: Yeah, I think that what the attorney said to me today was, she thinks it would be great if they filed a lawsuit, because she would like nothing more on earth than to depose them. Thank you very much. I appreciate it.
Much more ahead on this story. And when we come back, our big breaking news. New documents showing Donald Trump, Jr. privately messaged on WikiLeaks during the last year's election and shared some of those messages with the President's senior staff. We're going to tell you what information was shared and what it means to the Russia investigation and if Trump Jr. could be in hot-water. That is next.
[23:14:15] LEMON: Our breaking news tonight. Newly revealed communications between Donald Trump Jr. and WikiLeaks during last year's Presidential campaign. Lest discuss now with CNN national security analyst Michael Weiss and Shawn Turner, also CN contributor John Dean, and former Nixon White House counsel and CNN contributor Michael D'Antonio, author of "The truth about Trump." Good evening gentlemen, so good to have you on. Mike, I'm going to start with you. Can you connect the dots here on this U.S.-Russia WikiLeaks Donald Trump Jr., story? How do these communications add up to you?
MICHAEL WEISS, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: It is an influence operation, first and foremost.
LEMON: I am sorry Michael Weiss.
WEISS: WikiLeaks has been described by CIA Director Mike Pompeo as a hostile non-stated intelligence service which often does the bidding of the Russian intelligence services of the kremlin. I would go a step further and say it has been at least in the last five or six years an unwitting agent of influence of the Russian intelligence services and we see this not even with respect to the U.S. election all across the board from Catalan independence, every single issues, Syria, Ukraine, Julian Assange and WikiLeaks is out there propounding this Russian line. For them to reach out to the son of the GOP nominee and by the way I have to stress the WikiLeaks twitter account has been widely assumed, and there's been some reports to confirm it, to be manned by Julian Assange himself. Right? This is almost a one man band operation at this point.
[23:15:35] LEMON: So you believe this is Julian Assange? WEISS: Correct. And if more proof were needed the suggestion that a
man was held up in the U.S. Embassy for five plus years and cannot leave lawfully for another two, should be named Australia ambassador to the United States, that is classic Julian Assange. It has his name written all over it. And that was one of the suggestions made to Trump junior. Look, here's how we can help you defeat Hillary Clinton, here how we can help you kind of regain the narrative from scandals about your father, sexual harassment claims, et cetera. This is a classic influence operation. The difference though it is so dunderheaded, it is so obvious. And for it to be conducted by a direct message on twitter where WikiLeaks communications can be hacked, Donald Trump, Jr. is probably being listened to by foreign governments all over the world, it's idiotic. This is the thing that strikes me the most. This is more get smart than James Bond.
LEMON: Speaking of, Michael D'Antonio, you know the Trumps well. Is there any chance that Donald Trump Jr. didn't tell his father about this and what about all the people Don Jr. forwarded the e-mails to those at the highest levels in the Trump campaign?
MICHAEL D'ANTONIO, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, there's no way that then candidate Trump now President Trump wasn't signaled by his father. And I think one of the signs that this is a live story as Michael said, the keystone cox quality of it. There are three markers on Trump operations, one is be audacious, so we got the audacious quality of it where they're going to cooperate with WikiLeaks. The second one is that it's a family affair. And in this case it's certain that by going to Donald Trump Jr., WikiLeaks was doing the thing that will work with the Trumps. And the last is the spontaneity of it. So we saw that the candidate then Donald Trump went on the offensive on WikiLeaks very soon after this communication was begun and was encouraged. When WikiLeaks said we need your help to get this out there, there was candidate Trump talking about WikiLeaks and tweeting about it.
LEMON: Yeah. Shawn, explain why you say when reading the Atlantic piece nothing is illegal, but a startling picture is being painted. And I'm wondering is any of that illegal from the picture that is being painted.
SHAWN TURNER, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Yeah, Don, when you read this article as I said there's nothing here on the surface that communicates illegal activity necessarily, but that doesn't change the fact this article reveals some pretty startling information. If we just look at the facts, we know, as Michael said, we know that WikiLeaks is an agent of Russian government. The intelligence community as proven it. We also know WikiLeaks was communicating regularly with the Russian government during the election. So the article reveals that at the same time Donald Trump Jr. was communicating with WikiLeaks and relaying some of that information to senior officials in the Trump administration. You extend that further and you look at some really interesting synergy between some of the communication that was relayed to Donald Trump Jr. and some of the actions and things that the President said as he was out on the stump.
So these are clear-cut facts. There's no speculation here. And what really disturbs me about this, Don, is that in our political system we simply cannot have a situation in which U.S. citizens, in this case Donald Trump Jr., are colluding with or working with or anyway communicating with a foreign agent, an adversary of the United States against another U.S. citizen. In this case the Clinton campaign. I think from a national security perspective and that is a glitch of which I look at everything, that is pretty disturbing.
LEMON: John Dean, you say this shows the skeleton of a conspiracy, explain what you mean and what do you expect to see happen next?
JOHN DEAN, FORMER NIXON WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL: Well, if you piece the whole story together what you see of people agreeing to do something that is illegal, and that is the outline of a conspiracy.
[23:20:03] Don, I was also struck when I noticed tonight in the studio here that Don Jr. has posted his entire exchange. And when I read it closely I said the first thing he was asked to do by WikiLeaks was an illegal act. And that was to hack this -- this site they referred to. That they had guessed the password and recommended that he go in and do so. You read his first response and appears he is done that. Both the federal law and all states have prohibitions against going in to other people's accounts.
LEMON: So that is illegal, right?
DEAN: That is illegal. Shawn let me ask you tonight we're learning Attorney General Jeff Sessions has asked senior prosecutors to evaluate certain issues raise by House Republican relating to the Clinton foundation including the sale of uranium one. What do you say, I think you say this is simply ridiculous. Why is that? This is for Shawn.
TURNER: Look, it is ridiculous. Look, there are a wide range of investigative options available to the Justice Department that the Attorney General could invoke if he is really interested looking n to this. What he essentially has done here, if this reporting is true, is he is gone directly from concerns over these issues to the possibility that he might appoint a special prosecutor. Now, when I look at the letter that the -- the language of the letter that he sent, it does look like it's preliminary, that he might actually do that. But the notion that he would do that certainly on the surface would be seen as political and perhaps retaliation for the special prosecutor looking into the Russia issue.
LEMON: John, you wanted to respond?
DEAN: I was just hoping that the career prosecutor and the Justice Department that set him straight and refuse to take part of this kind of action and give him a little backbone on this. This is not standard Justice Department policy. It's just the opposite.
LEMON: Michael, listen, here is what the President had to say November 3rd about the FBI and the DOJ. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The saddest thing is
that because of the President of United States, I am not supposed to be involved with the Justice Department. I'm not supposed to be involved with the FBI. I'm not supposed to be doing the kind of things that I would love to be doing, and I'm very frustrated by it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Coincidence Michael D'Antonio that there might now be an investigation?
D'ANTONIO: No, not at all. I mean this is a President that has shown that he is willing to go where other Presidents have refused to go. And he is going to politicize as much of the government as he possibly can. You know it's not a mistake that the folks that he relates well to, the Duterte's in the Philippines, Putin in Russia, these are strong men who rule as authoritarians. And they can direct in Duterte's case extra judicial killings. I think our President's going to get to that point, but he admires the decisiveness and the control they have. And I think anything he can do to disrupt an investigation of him and to divert our attention is open to consideration.
LEMON: Michael. Michael, Sean, John, thank you very much where appreciate it.
When we comeback I will ask a former American diplomat what this newly revealed correspondents with Donald Trump Jr. and WikiLeaks will mean for U.S.-Russia relations.
[23:28:10] LEMON: Our breaking news tonight, Donald Trump, Jr. and WikiLeaks exchange private messages during the 2016 Presidential campaign. Trump junior releasing his exchanges with WikiLeaks tonight shortly after the Atlantic first reported on the correspondent. Join with me now to discuss all of this is Nicholas Burns, he is the former under Secretary of State for political affairs. Good evening, to you, Mr. Burns. Good to see you.
NICHOLAS BURNS, FORMER AMBASSADOR OF NATO: Good evening, Don.
LEMON: Ambassador Burns, let's listen to then candidate Trump on the campaign trail last October.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: The WikiLeaks revelations have revealed the degree of corruption at the highest levels of our government like nothing we have ever seen as a country before. Hillary Clinton, as WikiLeaks proves, is a corrupt globalist. WikiLeaks, I love WikiLeaks.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: So ambassador, this is all during a time now when we know Trump Jr. was corresponding with WikiLeaks. What do you make of the Atlantic's new reporting tonight?
BURNS: Well, it's startling. Obviously it's something that both congressional committees and Robert Mueller are going to have to look into as part of the ongoing investigation as to whether or not there was collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russian government. Because a lot of people suspect there were ties between WikiLeaks and the Russian government. I know one thing Don, having served in United States government in both Democratic and Republican administrations, WikiLeaks is an opponent of United States, it is obviously traffic in and stolen classified information from the United States. And for then candidate Trump to say he loved WikiLeaks, that tells you a lot about Donald Trump.
LEMON: Ambassador do you think there's any innocent explanation in your mind for this openness and communication between Donald Trump and WikiLeaks?
BURNS: It's hard to say. I don't want to prejudge Donald Trump, Jr. I have never met him. He is come out this evening with his own statement. He is released his own e-mails. So obviously it's for these investigations. Because there's no question that Russia hacked our campaign, our election. And it's no question they tried to distort our democracy. And, you know, for President Trump to say over the weekend that he took the word of a former KGB officer, President Putin over the word of our intelligence committee. Now the intelligence committee has made up of nonpartisan career officials. They are patriotic. They are trying to do the right thing to help our country and I thought it was one of the most reprehensible things that the president had said as president. To side with the Russian President over the United States government itself, that is of course tied into this story.
LEMON: Ambassador, I want to put this into context with some comments the President made on his overseas this weekend of first on air force one he said President Vladimir Putin told him he didn't meddle did the President miss the opportunity to push Putin on what our intelligence agencies think that Russia did? That Russia did meddle in our election?
BURNS: He sure did. When you have the intelligence community come out as they did in early January this year and say they were confident, 100 percent confident that Russia assaulted our election, then you got to defend the United States, it's the primary job of the President of the United States to defend the country. And as you know our military leadership has said that they believe Russia is the strongest adversary of the United States. They can't challenge us militarily, so they're seeking to challenge us taking advantage of social media, by diminishing our democracy. So the President has an absolute obligation to defend the United States, to be tough with President Putin. But there's a pattern here. You saw it in the meeting with President Putin and the visit to Beijing, the President talks tough but he gets in front of these authoritarian leaders and he is not tough at all, he doesn't have the courage to stand up and defend United States with President Xi Jinping, he blamed his predecessors, both Republican and Democrats for the trade imbalance with China. Did not blame China the way he has been back here in United States. And with President Putin, he accepts an explanation from someone who has been a consistent liar, it is his public career, that is President Putin, KGB officer and so it's stunning that the President of the United States would break from his own political Party, break from the career professionals in our intelligence community and the state department and take the side of the Russian government.
LEMON: Yeah, and then the President tried to -- President Trump tried to clarify his original comments. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Could you once and for all definitively, sir, say whether or not you believe President Putin or Russia interfered in the election?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: What I said was I was surprised there's any conflict on this, what I said is that he believes that. And that is very important for somebody to believe. I believe he feels that he and Russia did not meddle in the election. As to whether or not I believe it or not, I'm with our agencies especially as currently constituted with our leadership.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: First of all, did you understand that? It is not a witch-hunt or a hoax. What do you think he really believes?
BURNS: It's convoluted. The President's been very consistent. He is been critical of our intelligence community from day one. And when he received such severe criticism from Republican leaders over the weekend, he tried to turn it around. But he can't do that because if he actually believed what all of us, believe that Russia made this attack on our election then he would have form a bipartisan commission by now to worked with our 50 states to strengthen our voting mechanism so that the Russians can't do in 2018 and 2020 what they did in 2016, but President Trump has not done that. He is consistently said as you said, Don, that he believes this is hoax. He tweeted that out over the weekend. I think he is just trying to make the best of a very bad situation. I can't imagine any of his predecessors Republican or Democrat acting in such a craven fashion and not defending our country.
LEMON: Ambassador Burns, thank you for your time.
BURNS: Thank you, Don.
LEMON: When we come back, there are now five women claiming inappropriate sexual contact and abuse from Judge Roy Moore. All happening while they were just teenagers. The list of Senators calling for him to get out of the race. But it is growing, but will the voters in Alabama, will they decide?
[23:39:30] LEMON: Tonight Alabama's Republican senate candidate Judge Roy Moore denying a new accusation by a woman who claims that he sexually assaulted her in his car when she was 16 years old. This latest accusation coming as more and more Republicans on Capitol Hill call on Moore to quit the race. But what do people of Alabama think? I want to bring in now Beth Clayton and Josh Moon, both with the Alabama political reporters. Thank you so much. I'm so glad to have both of you onto get your perspective of people who actually live there.
[23:40:03] Beth, you first. CNN spoke with a number of women who say, there were whispers about Roy Moore for years that women in town new to stay away from him. Have you heard this before?
BETH CLAYTON, COLUMNIST, ALABAMA POLITICAL REPORTER: I hadn't. I grew up a little ways south of Gadsden so it wasn't something that I was really known to, but I heard through people who live up there, this same rumors, several weeks before any of this broke, so it wasn't a shock to me when I hear it, but I hate to see so many women coming forward who had been through the same thing.
LEMON: And there are reports tonight in the "The New Yorker" about alleged activity in a mall, and I'm sure you guys heard about that. But Josh, you were a reporter and columnist for Alabama political reporter, any sexual misconduct that you heard by Roy Moore before this.
JOSH MOONS, REPORTER COLUMNIST, ALABAMA POLITICAL REPORTER: No, I haven't. And I think it was one of those stories, one of those small town kind of stories. Where the problem was no one really showed up to ask. No one ever asked that question. And I think "the Washington Post" really sent some folks down to do reporting on Moore, to get some background. And one thing led to another and all of a sudden these stories started to spill out. And now you're getting a whole bunch of women talk about him being a predator at malls, being removed from malls at times. It's a thing there that is really unique to a small town like Gadsden where people know it in the town, but it never really spills out beyond that border.
LEMON: Why do you think that is? You said no one asked the question.
MOONS: I think that is it. Jerry Mitchell's, a really great reporter from Mississippi, he broke a lot of stories about the KKK and killings that were later prosecuted in the '80s and '90s. And there were admissions about all that kind of stuff. And it's kind of along the same lines. No one ever bothered and showed up to look. And as soon as they did, all of this started to spill out.
LEMON: Beth, similar question. You said Roy Moore is almost a deity status in Alabama. So tell us what Alabama voters are saying and why so many are standing by him?
CLAYTON: I think a lot of voters here really can see the writing on the wall and know these stories ring too true for so many people to ignore them. But there's still a majority of people here that who still have the Royal Moore bumper sticker on their car. And I don't think these facts are going to move even if the earth's 2,000 years old. LEMON: Interesting. Do they not get news? Do they even pay
attention to news? What's going on?
CLAYTON: I mean I think a lot of it's just the small town bubbles like Josh was saying where you've got these small towns where everything is kind of kept to itself and there's this way of life and way of doing things and that is the way it is. And anything that challenges that, it's scary for people. And so I think in a lot of ways people don't want to think about something that could challenge their world view. And to them Roy Moore is a Christian man, a godly man. And those of us who are watching this are saying there's no way this is the same guy that I worshipped at church.
LEMON: I wonder how that is, Josh. Especially with the conflation of religion here with an alleged illegal sex act. Because a group of 53 Alabama pastors signed a letter urging Alabama voters to vote for Roy Moore. And we can put the letter up there. But why?
MOONS: Money, you know. The answer to all of these questions is usually money or power there. And a lot of people have used the bible in this state to get ahead, a lot of very bad people have used the bible to justify a lot of bad acts over the history of Alabama here. And we can start counting them off, but I think everyone knows this story. And a lot of it has been rooted in the bible. They've found ways to justify an abhorrent act there.
LEMON: Do you think more women will come out, Josh?
MOONS: Yes, yes.
LEMON: Why so?
MOONS: I just think that at this point now, and I've received messages myself from a few women that have stories to tell about Roy Moore. I don't know they will be underage stories, but I think there will be a lot of stories Roy Moore acted inappropriately with me in some way kind of stories.
LEMON: Beth, do you think the same thing?
CLAYTON: I think so. In fact I know of women who had these experiences with Roy Moore when they were underage and they either don't want to share these stories, because they don't want their job or families to be put through, but for some reason they haven't decided to step forward. I know there's more women, but I hope everyone has the heart to come forward and tell their story right now.
[23:45:15] LEMON: All right. Thank you both. We're going to discuss this more. We'll be right back.
LEMON: News coming forward today against Roy Moore and I want to bring in now Tara Setmayer the former communications Director for Congresswoman Dana Rohrabacher. Also CNN political commentator Hilary Rosen and Scott Jennings. [23:50:04] Good evening. We've had some really interesting
conversations, some great conversations about this, actually, to move this situation forward and to get people to gain knowledge of it. Let's talk about this new alleged victim, new accuser coming forward for Roy Moore, Hilary. Beverly Young Nelson came forward today. Accusing of sexually assaulting her, she was 16 year-old, she is working as a waitress. Her press conference is very emotional. Do you think that is going to resonate with Alabama voters?
HILARY ROSEN, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I don't think you can look at that video and see this woman that many years later and how painful it is and not, number one, believe her, number two, and not feel for her. Number three, just not be filled with some rage that this man did this to this young girl and treated her so shabbily and is still treating her shabbily by having his people attack her over and over again in the press this afternoon. That I think is the worst part of this in some respects. That these women are brave, come out and then they get essentially victimized a second time when they finally do get the courage to speak out.
LEMON: An attorney for one of the victims came forward. I don't know if you saw the interview. When you're a teenager and you live in a town like that and even growing up there and you become an adult, you feel that you don't have power. Why would you come forward?
TARA SETMAYER FORMER COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR FOR CONGRESSMAN DANA ROHRABACHER: Of course. I think that is something that is lost in this conversation. First of all, I think it's absolutely shameful the victim blaming that is going on here. Republican -- the Republicans who have tried to defend this Roy Moore nonsense and a lot of conservative media, they were gunning on when the Clinton accusers came out. They paraded them out with no problem and expected everyone to believe them, but then they turn around for political reasons, which I think is pretty despicable this point because principles should really at this point, there should not be politics when it involves a child predator here, but a point that is been missed is that this person was a person of power. He was a law man. He was a district attorney. It's even bigger--
LEMON: Revered in that community.
SETMAYER: That is right. And it's even bigger than just the corporate -- you feel well, it's someone in corporate power. It's your job. But in this case he was part of the law. And in the south and in those times, especially for women, it's not easy to take on the law. These were teenagers. These are very simple, average American people. They're looking at this thinking I don't have the sources or the power to take this person on. And he even used his authority to threaten them, according to some of the accusers. So this question of why now, how come they didn't say anything. The people that are saying that know good and damn well why they didn't say anything. Those women were not in a position to take on someone in that power.
LEMON: According to the attorney they're feeling re-victimized all over again all this time later.
SETMAYER: Sure they do.
LEMON: Scott, from the very beginning you've never said if it's true or anything. You have never blamed the victims here. I'm not sure how Republicans are looking at you especially Roy Moore supporters right now, but more than 20 Republicans now, including the senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, have called for Roy Moore to step aside. Do you think -- how do you see this playing out?
SCOTT JENNINGS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I've recommended in some writing in commentary that I've done in the last couple of days that the President ask the Alabama Republican Party to withdraw Roy Moore's candidacy. I don't think Moore himself will pull himself out, but I think the Alabama Republican Party can withdraw his candidacy. I've also recommended the President consider asking Jeff Sessions to run as a write-in candidate. I think he is still popular enough to win. The thing about Moore's candidacy if it's withdrawn, according to the Alabama Secretary of State, even if he somehow got the most votes ask and the election would then be null and void. To me that is a great off ramp and a great option. I think President Trump should look at what the Republican Senators are telling him. Ted Cruz came out tonight and withdrew his support. We have all these Republican leaders from across the ideological spectrum from Ted Cruz to Susan Collins asking Roy Moore to come out of this race. The President ought to listen to the Senators of his Party. He ought to lead this Party and get the Alabama Republican Party to take Roy Moore out of this race.
LEMON: Scott, do you think he'll do that?
JENNINGS: I hope he does. I don't know. I know he is had to focus on this Asia trip. But here is what I think. Roy Moore is embarrassing Donald Trump, ok. And I've seen a lot of Trump supporters out with defending Moore and they've been blaming the victim and I've seen some people attacking Miss Corfman, the original accuser for having marriages and bankruptcy. If that is an argument you're making and you think you're helping the President, stop. You're being a complete idiot.
SETMAYER: He is not helping himself.
LEMON: She has as much right to tell her story as a businessman from New York has to be in the oval office. You are not helping the President. The loyal Trump line tonight, get Roy Moore out of this race. He is embarrassing the White House.
[23:55:00] LEMON: Good.
ROSEN: The President does not have much moral authority in this area and I think --
LEMON: I think it's a legitimate question. How does he do that without saying women have accused you of the same thing.
ROSEN: I think it is hard for him.
JENNINGS: No one has ever accused him of pedophilia. LEMON: No, I mean sexual assault. Sexual assault.
JENNINGS: They're not the same.
LEMON: Sexual assault. And we didn't use the word pedophilia. 16- year-old is not pedophilia.
ROSEN: I do agree that as the head of the Party the President should denounce Roy Moore. Should say something. He was very quick as we remember to denounce Harvey Weinstein and hasn't done the same thing with Roy Moore. There's two issues I think right now we're facing with Roy Moore. One is that this guy has made a career of attacking other people's values. As a lesbian he has been after my people for the last 30 years. He has done everything he can to put us down. It's time for him to take that hypocrisy elsewhere.
LEMON: Unfortunately I'm out of town. Thank you all. I appreciate it. That is it for us tonight. Thanks for watching. I'll see you right back here tomorrow.