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Trump Blasts Franken; Past Accusation Against Trump; Gillibrand on Clinton; Kushner Russia Documents. Aired 2-2:30p ET

Aired November 17, 2017 - 14:00   ET



[14:00:21] BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Here we go on this Friday afternoon. I'm Brooke Baldwin. You're watching CNN. Thank you so much for being with me.

Just a heads up to everyone. Very shortly the White House will be holding its daily briefing. Of course, we'll take it live. And the administration will surely be asked to explain the whopping double standard the president just dropped himself into via Twitter.

While he himself has really remained silent on all things Roy Moore, the Alabama Senate candidate, whether or not he should get out of the race after these allegations of sex abuse, improperly touching a then 14 year old, the president has instead chosen to blast Democratic Senator Al Franken.

Franken has apologized to a radio anchor after she accused the then private citizen Franken some 11 years ago of groping and forcing her to kiss him during this USO tour back in 2006.

President Trump did speak directly to this photo of Al Franken appearing to touch her in ways he never ever ever should have done, you know, while she was asleep. The woman there, Leeann Tweeden.

Here is the tweet from the president saying this, the Al Frankenstein picture is really bad, speaks a thousand words. Where do his hands go in pictures two, three, four, five, and six while she sleeps, he asks.

Is Franken a target because he's a Democrat and Moore is a Republican? Or is it because Franken apologized for his offenses, while Moore continues to deny, deny, deny.

Whatever that answer may be, the president has only placed himself in the exact position he has been trying to avoid, according to a source, under more scrutiny for the sex allegations made against him during the presidential campaign. Do you remember this audio clip?


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You know, I'm automatically attracted to beautiful. I just start kissing them. It's like a magnet. You just (INAUDIBLE). I don't even wait. And when you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.

BILLY BUSH: Whatever you want.

TRUMP: Grab them by the (EXPLETIVE DELETED). You can do anything.


BALDWIN: Let's start at the White House with our correspondent there, Abby Phillip.

And so Abby, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway has offered some insight as to why the president has spoken out on Senator Franken but chosen not to on the Senate Candidate Roy Moore. What did she say?

ABBY PHILLIP, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Brooke, according to the White House, the president prefers to talk about breaking news and not old news. White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway said in an interview this morning that when the Roy Moore story broke eight days ago, the president was overseas. And so that's why he didn't comment on it when he returned. The Al Franken story broke in the last couple of days, so he wanted to say something about that.

Now, another White House official has also talked about the Roy Moore issue, reminding CNN's Dana Bash in an interview today that the president actually never endorsed Roy Moore in the primary. He endorsed his opponent, Luther Strange. And so the president has already kind of stepped aside from that race.

At the same time, Senate Republicans are looking for a way out here. A source tells us that Mitch McConnell is preparing a document, a briefing document for the White House, about some options that might be available to them. Among them potentially having the Alabama governor, Kay Ivey, postpone or move back the date of this election in order to give them more options. We know, though, that the Alabama governor has already said that she does not want to do that and is unlikely to do so.

BALDWIN: Right. And we also know that the president, vis-a-vis Sarah Huckabee Sanders, has said really he wants Alabamans to decide this one.

Abby Phillip, thank you so much.

Let's have a bigger conversation. I get to start my show off with four very smart, differing opinion women here on-set here in New York. I've got CNN special correspondent Jamie Gangel, Zerlina Maxwell, who is director of progress media for Hillary Clinton's campaign, conservative commentator Carrie Sheffield, and criminal defense attorney Sara Azari.

So, ladies, welcome.




BALDWIN: And let me just cut straight to the conservative on the panel here.

SHEFFIELD: All right.

BALDWIN: We've laid it out. Roy Moore, Al Franken, this is hypocrisy on behalf from the president, no?

SHEFFIELD: Well, I think it's important to point out that Trump did say that if the allegations were true that Moore should step aside. So that's the other additional piece.

I was never Trump conservative. We talked about this on your show. So I don't think that looking to Trump for the moral consistency that we need is something that we could expect consistently.

That said, I think it's important to understand that Trump has opened the conversation here to expose the hypocrisy on the Democratic side, as well as the Republican side. So when you --

BALDWIN: We're going to get there on the Democratic side.


BALDWIN: We're going to get there. Trust me, we're going to go there.

[14:05:00] But, you know, when you have all these other voices in Washington, Republicans, who are saying -- stepping forward and saying, we believe the accusers' stories. And clearly he believes the accuser's story in the Al Franken case because he's said what he did about Frankenstein. What's different in this case with Roy Moore? Why is that not hypocritical of the president?

SHEFFIELD: Well, as I said, Trump said that Moore should step aside if these allegations are true.

BALDWIN: If is the caveat.

SHEFFIELD: So -- and I think the difference with the Franken thing is you have this picture, this very explicit picture, whereas in the Moore case Trump's just saying we need more -- more evidence.

I personally think --

BALDWIN: (INAUDIBLE) said this personally. This has not come from the president directly.

Go ahead.

AZARI: But, yes, you have a picture. But in the Moore case, you have multiple women --

BALDWIN: Correct. AZARI: Coming forward and accounting the same -- almost the same story, which makes it more believable, which makes it more credible. It makes a case against --

BALDWIN: It's a pattern.


AZARI: It's a pattern by this person. And, you know, I think there is no consistency. I think it's complete hypocrisy. This is a president who's going to leave the White House and go to the courthouse because he himself has at least 12 lawsuits for sexual misconduct that, you know, were brought about during the election. So he should take the Fifth even on Twitter. He should not say a word whether it's about a Republican or a Democrat.

BALDWIN: Well, too late for that because we just read his two tweets there, right? He has gone there.


BALDWIN: Do you think it's because a -- Al Franken's a Democratic or because there's a picture, Zerlina, or because Al Franken has apologized that he was fair game for the president?

MAXWELL: It's because Al Franken is a Democrats. Like let's be clear about what we're talking about.

BALDWIN: That's what --

AZARI: Of course.

MAXWELL: This is because it's political. And because Roy Moore's allegations -- you know, Sarah Huckabee Sanders has said President Trump doesn't like it when we're rehashing old allegations. I wonder why, because there are allegations about President Trump from 30 and 40 years ago all the way up to most recently the "Access Hollywood" tape that are very problematic for him.

But I think if true is actually saying, I don't believe the women. And so we have to understand that when you couch it in "if true," you are not taking testimonial evidence as evidence. Yes, in Al Franken's case there's a picture, but he apologized to the person that matters, which is the person that he was -- that he mistreated. And I this that that's an important point here and that's a distinction between President Trump and Al Franken. Al Franken apologized to the person he mistreated, called it out for being problematic and called for an investigation of himself.

SHEFFIELD: But I think -- I think an apology -- I think an apology is not sufficient. I think an investigation is warranted (INAUDIBLE) --

MAXWELL: He already called for that and he's going to -- he's willing to go through that.

SHEFFIELD: Yes. And I will say -- (CROSS TALK)

MAXWELL: President Trump, there's no investigation into him, and he's on tape confessing (ph).


AZARI: But the accuser -- but the accuser here thinks the apology is genuine and sufficient.

MAXWELL: Correct. That matters.

AZARI: That's important as well. And with Roy Moore, he's now wanting a handwriting expert to come in and prove that it's not his handwriting in that yearbook. I mean he's really denying everything.

SHEFFIELD: Right. Right.

BALDWIN: Let me get Jamie Gangel. I want to hear from you.

GANGEL: So a couple of things here.

It absolutely is political that one's a Democrat, one's a Republican.


GANGEL: And let's just talk about it on a political level for a second. How long has it been since we played that "Access Hollywood" tape?

BALDWIN: It's been a minute. It's been a minute.

GANGEL: OK. OK. It is but it had been a long, long time before that.


GANGEL: He brought that back on himself by doing this tweet. He also, once again, did a misspelling. That's not how you spell Frankenstein.

But apart from that, there are two play books here. There is the, as you said, deny, deny, deny. And what happens when you do that? You become president of the United States.

SHEFFIELD: Like Bill Clinton, and you pay $850,000 to get --

GANGEL: And what -- what have we seen -- wait one second.

AZARI: It's not an analogy.

SHEFFIELD: No, it is an analogy because he normalized the behavior.

GANGEL: One second.

MAXWELL: Bill Clinton -- Bill Clinton was an affair. It was not sexual misconduct.


SHEFFIELD: Oh, then why did he --

MAXWELL: (INAUDIBLE) not to blame all me who are behaving masoganistically (ph).

SHEFFIELD: Absolutely. Absolutely. He's normalized --

MAXWELL: (INAUDIBLE) not going -- that is not true.


BALDWIN: Hang on, hang on, hang on, ladies.

MAXWELL: It is not Bill Clinton's fault that men behave this way.

BALDWIN: All right, you want go to -- let's go to Bill Clinton. I think that we should talk about it.

A couple of pieces I read this week, Peter Baker in "The New York Times" wrote a piece called, what about Bill, sexual misconduct debate revives question about Clinton. In Voxx, Matthew Yglesias said Bill Clinton should have resigned. And now you have this Democrat senator, who, let's all keep in mind, Kirsten Gillibrand took Hillary Clinton's old New York Senate seat, and she said this. Roll it.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is it your view that President Clinton should have stepped down at that time given the allegations?

SEN. KIRSTIN GILLIBRAND (D), NEW YORK: I -- yes, I think that is the appropriate response. But I think things have changed today. And I think under those circumstances, there should be a very different reaction. And I think in light of this conversation, we should have a very different conversation about President Trump and a very different conversation about allegations against him.


BALDWIN: So, hang on. Swift, swift response from dear Clinton friend, Philippe Reines saying via Twitter, Ken Starr spent 70 million on a consensual -- I can't even say this word on TV -- bleep. Senate voted to keep POTUS WJC but not enough for you, Senator Gillibrand. Over 20 years you took the Clinton's endorsements, money and seat. Hypocrite, he says. Interesting strategy for 2020 primaries. Best of luck.

[14:10:00] So he's blasting Gillibrand, right, for her own hypocrisy for taking money from the Clintons. But I think that in this new groundswell of everything we're experiencing, there is a new lens on Bill Clinton. Fair point. Go ahead.

SHEFFIELD: Yes, absolutely, because this goes beyond just Monica. This goes to the $850,000 that Bill Clinton paid to Paula Jones to first sexual harassment. She only asked for 700,000 but she got $850,000 from Bill Clinton. That was payola. He didn't admit guilt, but why would you pay $850,000 unless you were doing something wrong.

And this was not just her. It was case after case after case. And Hillary Clinton, she -- victim shamed. You want to talk about listening to women. She called Monica Lewandowsky, who was an intern at the time --

MAXWELL: Oh, (INAUDIBLE), blaming the women for the men's behavior. It is not fair to do that. And -- it is not fair to do that.

SHEFFIELD: Absolute. No. But I -- no, I believe you should listen to the women.

MAXWELL: Yes. Yes. Yes, you should, but blaming -- bring up Hillary Clinton in a conversation about Bill Clinton's behavior is not appropriate.

SHEFFIELD: This is what Trump said. Trump won because Hillary Clinton didn't listen (ph).

MAXWELL: I think we should focus on the men's choices and the men's behavior.


MAXWELL: And all men need to reflect upon their behavior, not just famous ones and not just politicians.


SHEFFIELD: No, but -- no, but this is a culture --

MAXWELL: This is a cultural problem, not something that we should just put all on Hillary Clinton's shoulders.

SHEFFIELD: It is a cultural problem. I'm not putting it all on her shoulders.

MAXWELL: She lost to Trump, the guy on tape who --


SHEFFIELD: Hillary Clinton had called -- Hillary Clinton went off Lewinsky, called her a bimbo (ph).

AZARI: But, but, wait a second --

BALDWIN: Hang on, hang on, hang on, hang on, Carrie.

AZARI: The Monica Lewinsky sex scandal was an affair with somebody that was of age. Monica Lewinsky. Lewinsky has never been an accuser. She has never, since the time, not back then, not since then, ever said that he did this to me. It was unwanted. I didn't want to get touched. I mean she's not an accuser. So now we're going to step in, and on her behalf accuse him of some misconduct?

(CROSS TALK) MAXWELL: Yes, anything that's problematic.

AZARI: She had a marital affair that is not illegal. It might be immoral, it might be unethical, but it's not illegal to have an affair. Yes, it's wrong for the president to do that. But, remember, the illegality with Clinton was because of the perjury over which he was impeached.

MAXWELL: Right. Right.

AZARI: Not because he had an affair.

MAXWELL: And Ken Starr was appointed a year and a half before he even met Monica.

SHEFFIELD: She -- Monica was an intern in the power structure.

BALDWIN: OK. OK. Hang on. Hang on.

Jamie Gangel has so patiently sat here quietly and I just so value your opinion.

AZARI: We want to hear from you (ph).

BALDWIN: You've seen it. You've covered it. Please, please, weigh in.

GANGEL: So I would like to add this to the discussion. And that is, we are in a different time and place.

MAXWELL: We are.

AZARI: Sure.

GANGEL: And I think we all have to recognize that.


GANGEL: And I am not saying that anyone, Bill Clinton or anybody else who did harassment was correct or deserves a pass or anything.


GANGEL: But we are -- we keep using this term, in a watershed moment.


GANGEL: And people are losing their jobs now when they apologize. They're losing their book contracts. They're losing --

BALDWIN: Their parts in movies.

GANGEL: Their parts in movies. Their -- and it's not just in Hollywood or media. People have lost their jobs in finance. And so I think, at a certain point, and I don't know the answer to this, but at a certain point we have to decide how we're going to handle this going forward in a reasonable way. Is everyone going to lose their job? Are we going to go back --


AZARI: And it looks like the future will be female. I don't know how many men will be left around in the workplace.

BALDWIN: Well, we need the men, ladies. We need the men.

SHEFFIELD: We do need the men.

I think it's important to note like how many women have been stopped economically from advancing in their position? That's what we should be worried about. We don't need to be worrying and crying over the men and their lost economic opportunities. What about the women? The women who quit their job? The women who didn't advance? Or maybe the women who got an advancement because they chose to engage in this game, which is toxic.

And I am glad -- I didn't vote for Trump. I was a never Trump conservative. But at this moment, like you said, it is a watershed moment. The fact that Gretchen Carlson is now this powerful voice and she's collecting so many women together to expose this moment, I think it's good. And I hope that even though we have different, you know, political opinions, we can all come together and say, we want to empower women.


AZARI: It's not a political issue.

MAXWELL: But I just want to -- I just want to point out that it's ten years -- well, actually more -- 40 years of feminist thinking that led us to this moment. I've been talking about this for a decade. I've been talking about rape culture for a decade, along with my colleagues, and people looked at me like I was crazy. But I think it's important that we all are understanding this in a new light.

BALDWIN: Agree. And I just want to end with this. I thought what Debbie Dingell -- and you and I were e-mailing about this -- what Congresswoman Debbie Dingell made this point this morning as she was on TV and she was giving her own MeToo story. And we talked so much about the ground well and the (INAUDIBLE) and the movement and everything else and feeling empowered. But there is a little bit of a but, and I just want to play this from her. She talked about being groped by a, quote, prominent historical person and a former senator acting inappropriately towards her. But then she said this.


ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR, "NEW DAY": Hasn't the tide turned?

REP. DEBBIE DINGELL (D), MICHIGAN: No. And I'll say that to my colleagues. I don't think it's the watershed moment that so many people think it is because I still think that for too many the consequences in naming who the person is and what we have to do is change the culture and we have to have everybody speak up. (END VIDEO CLIP)

[14:15:00] BALDWIN: Final thought from you on that. She's right.

GANGEL: I completely agree. So full disclosure, Debbie and I went to college together. We've known each other a long time. And I texted her after that. I think she's absolutely correct. This is the beginning, not the end. And there are too many women out there, people who work as waitresses, or, you know, in -- who do not have the power anywhere close to that.

BALDWIN: She said until the waitress in my hometown feel that they can speak up without the repercussions, then this is still an issue.


GANGEL: This is -- this is the beginning.

SHEFFIELD: And Gretchen Carlson in her book, "Be Fierce," she has a chapter, like a handbook on how to do this. It's about collecting evidence. It's being systematic. It's exposing it. So maybe you're not going to get a national -- your boss isn't going to be on the front page of "The Wall Street Journal," but maybe the local newspaper. You can get attention. Your voice matters. Social media will help amplify. There's so many things we can do, even if this is just the start, I agree.

BALDWIN: We all have a voice. Thank you all, ladies, so very much.

MAXWELL: Thank you.

BALDWIN: Zerlina and Carrie and Sara and Jamie, thank you.

Still ahead here on CNN, he will not step down. Those words from the wife of embattled Senate Candidate Roy Moore there in Alabama, publicly speaking out, defending her husband. We'll hear from her.

Also what a new poll is revealing about Moore's support in his home state.

And one of President Trump's closest confidants, son-in-law Jared Kushner, being called out again for failing to turn over documents related to this Russia investigation. Is this a troubling pattern? We're going to talk about it.

You're watching CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin.


[14:21:04] BALDWIN: And we're back. You're watching CNN. I'm Brooke Baldwin.

Kayla Moore, the wife of embattled Senate Candidate Roy Moore, is not only standing by her man, today she spoke out saying in no uncertain terms her husband is staying in Alabama's Senate race to the very end. She's also defending Moore against the accusations being made by multiple women that he pursued sexual relationships with them when they were merely teenagers.

Mrs. Moore appeared on the steps of the Alabama State Capitol earlier today surrounded by this group calling itself women for Roy Moore. Here is a bit more what Kayla Moore had to say.


KAYLA MOORE, ROY MOORE'S WIFE: "The Washington Post" has called everybody that I have ever known for the last 40 years. They have called everybody my husband has ever known for the last 40 years. They print whatever anyone says without checking to even see if it is correct. They have staked out Etowah County, basically camped out, until the end of this election.

So to the people of Alabama, thank you for being smarter than they think you are. They will call you names. They will say all manner of evil against you. And I would say, consider the source.

I have been married to my husband, Judge Roy Moore, for over 32 years. He was a gradual of West Point. He served our country in Vietnam. And he has always been an officer and a gentleman. He is a loving father and grandfather. And, most important, he is a Christian.

So let me set the record straight. Even after all the attacks against me, against my family, against the foundation, and now against my husband, he will not step down. He will not stop fighting for the people of Alabama. In his words, and I quote, I will not stop until they lay me in that box in the ground.

Thank you for being here. And God bless Alabama and the United States of America.


BALDWIN: Kayla Moore.

A new Fox News poll indicates Alabama's support for Moore may be slipping. The new poll has Democrat Doug Jones beating Moore by eight points. And when I say new, I mean the poll was just taken Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.

Coming up next, the Russia investigation hitting another road block after the Senate Judiciary Committee says Jared Kushner failed to turn over all the documents they've been asking for again. So how many times will this be allowed? Let's talk about it.


[14:28:39] BALDWIN: The president's son-in-law called out again. Jared Kushner accused of not turning over documents related to the Russia investigation. And if that sounds familiar, it's because thus far he has failed to disclose at least five other meetings or business transactions with Russian officials.

So, Shawn Turner with me here in New York today, CNN national security analyst. It's so nice to have you in. Thank you so much for being here.

SHAWN TURNER, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Thanks so much for having me, Brooke.

BALDWIN: How many times can you omit information on, you know, national security forms and not have a serious problem?

TURNER: Yes, you know, I think we're beyond the point where we can give Jared Kushner the benefit of the doubt on this.

BALDWIN: You do?

TURNER: Yes, I think so. Now, we've got multiple instances now in which he has recalled information after it either came out in the media or it was called to his attention by people investigating this.

And I think what really disturbs me about this most recent letter that Senator Feinstein and Grassley sent asking for additional documents is that they talk about some specifics that they're looking for. When they talk about any documents related to creating a backdoor or backchannel, that really gets the hair on the back of my neck up because, you know, it's prerogative of sitting governments, and sitting administrations to establish backdoor channels to be able to communicate with our partners and allies about foreign policy, national security issues, to be able to make decisions.

And so the question is, why would Jared Kushner have any correspondence or be talking with anyone about creating a backdoor channel between WikiLeaks and the Russians? This is the kind of thing that from a national security perspective really causes some concern.

[14:30:08] BALDWIN: OK, so that makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up when you hear things like that. But, you know, you said an important phrase, which is, you know,