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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Stormy Daniels' Attorney: More Women Coming Forward About Alleged Affairs with Trump; White House Defends Trump's Silence On Stormy Daniels; Rep. Ryan Costello Not Running Again, Cites Controversies Like Stormy Daniels; White House Defends Census Decision to Add Citizenship Question; Sources: Trump's Controversial CIA Pick Tells Senators She Didn't Order Destruction of Interrogation Tapes. Aired 7-8p ET
Aired March 27, 2018 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[19:00:02] WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: That's it for me. Thanks very much for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer in THE SITUATION ROOM. "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.
ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: OUTFRONT next, Trump silent. The attorney for Stormy Daniels says more women are coming forward about alleged affairs with Trump. How long will the President stay quiet?
Plus raging firestorm over the census, this could be the President's most consequential move yet. And George W. Bush, like you've never seen him before. Let's go OUTFRONT.
Good evening, I'm Erin Burnett. OUTFRONT tonight, eight more women, that's the number of women Stormy Daniels' lawyer now says has approached him with stories about President Trump. Two of them he has said have nondisclosure agreements with the President.
Michael Avenatti says some of their stories have similarities to Daniels, but he admits he is not fully vetted them yet. But tonight, the President still uncharacteristically silent and Press Secretary Sarah Sanders tried to dodge the question again today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why the silence? Is someone advising him to be silent or is he following his own adviser?
SARAH SANDER, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I don't think it's silent when the President has addressed this. We have addressed it extensively. There is just nothing else to add.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: The president has addressed this? More like ignored the two women who have spoken publicly and come out with their stories about affairs with him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, are Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal lying about the affairs?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President, is Karen McDougal telling the truth?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. President, any comments on Ms. McDougal?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And it goes on and on. So why isn't the President fighting back? After all, he had said no problem doing it before when it comes to the at least 15 women who have accused him of assault harassment and improper advances.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: These claims are all fabricated. They are pure fiction and they are outright lies. These events never, ever happened.
Every women lied when they came forward to hurt my campaign, total fabrication. The events never happened, never. All of these liars will be sued.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: I always have to point out that he has not sued a single one of them. But when it comes to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal who by their accounts had consensual affairs with the President, Trump leaves the response up to his spokes people.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RAJ SHAH, WHITE HOUSE PRINCIPAL DEPUTY PRESS SECRETARY: The president doesn't believe that any of the claims that Ms. Daniels made last night interview are accurate.
SANDERS: Yes, the President has denied those allegations.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Except that he hasn't himself. Why is he silent? Well, Sarah Sanders did not have a good answer to that today.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SANDERS: He's focused on pushing his agenda through. Sometimes he chooses to specifically engage and punch back and sometimes he doesn't. But the President is so been incredibly engaged. He gives us messages to come out and deliver on his behalf on the regular basis, but he's also put out a number of tweets over the last week. And I think you can expect that he'll continue to do that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Doesn't push back. Well, that's not true. The President does it nonstop and he is proud of doing it. In fact, the list of people he's gone after over the years seems endless.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Sleepy eyes Chuck Todd, he's a sleeping son of a bitch.
He's not a war hero.
Hillary Clinton is a joke. And I see her barking like a dog.
Rosie O'Donnell is disgusting, I mean, both inside and out. You take a look at her, she's a slob.
Cher is somewhat of a loser. She's lonely. She's unhappy.
I like his acting, but you know in terms, in terms of when I watch him doing interviews and various other things, we're not dealing with Albert Einstein.
I thought Seth Meyers, frankly, his delivery was not good. He's a stutter.
You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever.
He's lying Ted. He's no good. I'm telling you, he's a bad guy.
I call him little Marco, little Marco.
Crooked Hillary Clinton.
I call her Pocahontas and that's an insult to Pocahontas.
This dopey guy, Glenn Beck, he looks like hell.
She was the winner and, you know, she gained a massive amount of weight and it was, it was a real problem. We had a real problem.
You got to see this guy. Oh, I don't know what I said. I don't remember.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And that's just what's on tape. Some of his personal attacks are actually lobbed via Twitter. Here are the faces on those the President has going after on Twitter, just since taking off, Mark Cuban, not smart. Meryl Streep, overrated. Arnold Schwarzenegger, bad governor, even worse of hosting "The Apprentice." And, you know, look, you can see. It goes on and on and on.
So for the White House to say that this is a President that doesn't hit back on every topic, well, look, who else has gone after the President the way Stormy Daniels has? That the President hasn't punched back.
I mean she's dominated the airwaves for weeks. We know he loves watching the airwaves. You'll be hard-pressed to find that person, which is why the President silence when it comes to Daniels and her claims is deafening, especially after comments like this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
[19:05:09] ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Were you physically attracted to him?
STORMY DANIELS, ALLEGES AFFAIR WITH DONALD TRUMP: No.
COOPER: Not at all?
2(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: So why is the President not counterpunching this time. What is Daniels who has paid $130,000 to keep silent by the President's personal attorney days before the election have on the President? This is a serious question with legal implications for the President and his team and the American people as we say, again, deserve answers.
Jeff Zeleny is OUTFRONT live at the White House.
And, Jeff, he is so silent this time. I mean, he -- not usually does he usually go out himself and take the on us upon himself to weigh in, he's ignoring every shouted question about Stormy Daniels.
JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: He is indeed. And I mean there are few subjects' that you've just discussed that have been off limits for this President and, in fact, hardly innate (ph) that we can think of. So certainly his silence is very unusual, but it's strategic in this matter.
I'm told that he is being advised by friends and other sort of talking to him to simply not weigh in. It could only make this worse. Never mind the politics. Yes, his supporters will stick with him. We're in the middle of the midterm election here. There is a worry in the suburbs across America that this story is not helpful to the Republican brand to say the least here, but the legal ramifications is also important.
But the reality here is Sarah Sanders told me today when we tried to press her on this that extensively the White House has answered every question. That's just simply not true. We still do not know, I would say a central question, did the President know or authorize the payment of $130,000 to Stormy Daniels in the days leading up to the 2016 election? We don't know the answer to that.
So the President I am guessing will be asked this, but, Erin, his schedule is something I've not seen really in the last, I would say, 15 months of this presidency. Tomorrow again his schedule does not call for any public events. It didn't today. It didn't yesterday. So that is my question here. How much is this going to seep into other matters here? He simply is not able, does not willing to do other things to get close to a camera for this. So the next time we're scheduled to see him with potentially asking the question is on Thursday when he leaves for Cleveland and then Mar- a-Lago. That could change of course, but he is hunkering down here. The question is, will he discipline long enough to do it? Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Jeff Zeleny, thank you very much.
Patrick Healy joins me now, Politics Editor for "The New York Times," Eliana Johnson, White House Correspondent for Politico, and John Avlon, Editor-in-Chief of "The Daily Beast."
I mean, John, it is pretty stunning when you look at the schedule. I mean, you know, usually there's a whole list of things. Tomorrow it's a lunch with the vice president. And he's going to be some sort of awarding ambassadorships, which may or may not be on camera. This is a guy who loves the cameras and he has been, frankly, literally running away from them for quite a while.
JOHN AVLON, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, THE DAILY BEAST: This is a guy who has an opinion on everything, who loves punching back, whose real calling was to be the Don Rickles of politics and it must be killing him to not be able to push back and to avoid cameras.
But it also does create environment of a White House that's not in crisis that certainly hunkered down (INAUDIBLE). It doesn't help him do his job and they may try to throw (ph) out Bill Clinton like he's focus on his job in helping the American people. But it does look a lot like a denial, like a denial and being caught in the double blind where he's afraid to speak, because if he does, he's afraid he can create legal jeopardy as well as compound the problem.
BURNETT: And, of course, that's a big issue here, Patrick, right? Because one of these cases with one of the women who had accuse him of assault --
PATRICK HEALY, POLITICS EDITOR, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": Right.
BURNETT: -- is going forward. She had sued him for defamation. So he may actually have to answer questions under oath.
BURNETT: So he's opening himself up to, frankly, being out as a liar.
HEALY: Right, real discovery having to answer questions under oath. I mean lawyers will tell a client in this kind of situation shut up. Shut up, don't say anything. President Trump usually can't control himself.
However, in this case, very interestingly, he is shutting up for now and it raises the possibility of lawyers saying to him, "You don't really know what Stormy Daniels has." I mean, it is a fear tactic. You know, we don't know what she might have on tape, what kind of evidence she might have. Who knows, maybe she has nothing. Maybe she had something.
But what we do know, President Trump likes nothing more than calling people liars, he loves it --
HEALY: -- especially women, he loves it, whether it's Rosie O'Donnell, Megyn Kelly, but especially the women who accused him of sexual impropriety. He has used that word over and over again. He loves to punch down. And the fact that he is not going after Stormy Daniels, I mean, she has said things about this guy that go to his ego.
HEALY: So fundamentally --
BURNETT: Oh, in such -- I mean, the attractiveness point, I didn't play that to be funny. We know it matters. It matter deeply to him. This is a guy who when someone comes in work are all, you know, the first thing is how do they look? Do they look apart?
HEALY: He said to the presidential debate he talked about, you know, the size of this mail organ.
HEALY: Oh, is that what he did?
AVLON: Yes, fortunately that's probably what he did.
BURNETT: I mean, Eliana, this is the thing that what we have seen here, and both Patrick and John are pointing out, is the level of discipline we have not yet seen from this president. That is actually an important thing.
[19:10:05] He's been told by friends and advisers countless times to not go on Twitter and he ignored them every single time. But this time, he's actually listening. Do you think that he's going to be able to hold out?
ELIANA JOHNSON, WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, POLITICO: That's absolutely right. I think there are a couple things going on here. The first is that of the many people the President has gone after, both in person and on Twitter, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Rosie O'Donnell, not only has he done so cost free, but he's actually benefited politically from doing so.
In this case, he could pay a real, not only political cost, but a legal cost from going after Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal. And the other thing is the President contrary to -- in previous times, you know, his lawyers have warned him about going after Robert Mueller and he's done that anyway. He is, as Patrick noted, he's actually listening to the advice of his lawyers.
I don't -- I wouldn't venture to guess why he's doing that in this case as opposed to in the case of the Mueller probe, which obviously could put him in legal peril as well. But I can say that having talked to many of his allies who have spoken with him about it, they are greatly relieved that the President for now is staying quiet. I would not venture to say whether he'll continue to keep his mouth shut.
BURNETT: I'm curious though, and I want to get the sound bite ready that we played, the point about how he loves the word liar and he loves to use it and he uses it liberally when it comes to women. In particular, the 15 plus women who have accused him of unwanted advances, assault, harassment, depending in the individual case. Let me just play that again of the President calling them liars. OK, we're getting it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: -- all fabricated. They are pure fiction and they are outright lies. These events never, ever happened.
Every women lied when they came forward to hurt my campaign, total fabrication. The events never happened, never. All of these liars will be sued.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: And now in the case where you have an NDA, right, and there are lawsuits actually going on. The President has joined the lawsuit against Stormy Daniels on this, he still not weighing in and not using the word liar. There's a reason -- there's got to be a very specific reason for that.
AVLON: There is a reason. I mean the two things he seems -- he is willing to comment, weigh in and punch down on anything except Stormy Daniels and Vladimir Putin. These seem to be the two topics that are off limits to him. They are varying degrees of importance, but I will say that Stormy Daniels probably cuts on a personal level even more than the Mueller probe for him.
And what it also raises is with the NDA out there and, you know, her lawyer saying there are more women to come, if this has really been a pattern, a play they have run, then there is going to be compounding problems for him.
BURNETT: Right. And you're talking about NDAs because Michael Avenatti saying eight additional women.
BURNETT: He's making it clear that he hasn't even vetted them all, I want to make that point.
BURNETT: But he's saying two of them also said that they had NDAs with the President.
HEALY: Right, right. And President Trump -- I mean, he comes out, you know, the Roy Cohn's school of politics which is, you know, total warfare, lawyer up, go after put NDAs on people, muzzle them. You know, he wants to control the situation.
But I will say that, you know, with Stormy Daniels, I think we have to say this because I covered Hillary Clinton's two presidential campaigns. I wrote a lot about Hillary and Bill Clinton. Melania Trump is a major figure in this, you know. Their son is in the White House. He is a figure in this.
The reality is that President Trump -- we don't know what he is thinking with regard to this, but the more that he goes after this, the more that he sort of deals with this, the reality is that this is a very sensitive area. We don't know what Mrs. Trump thinks.
BURNETT: No, we don't.
HEALY: There's a human cause.
BURNETT: Yes. All right, thank you all very much.
And next, the epic battle over this question, are you a U.S. citizen? Plus after years working under cover at the CIA, Trump's pick to head the agency is going public, and fighting even Republicans who object. Will she get the job?
And Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal say they've had affairs with the President, does this matter? This is the crucial question, everyone, does it matter to the women who got him over the top into the White House?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOANNE WHITE, REPUBLICAN VOTER: Just because she's a porn star or just because she's a playmate, I don't care.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
[19:18:06] BURNETT: Tonight, a Republican congressman saying he won't run for reelection in part because he is inundated with questions about Stormy Daniels. Pennsylvania Congressman Ryan Costello telling "The New York Times," "If I had a town hall this week it would be questions after question, do you believe him or do you believe her? Why don't you believe her?" Now, Costello to be clear has said believes the women.
This Stormy Daniels' attorney tells CNN that eight women have come forward in total to him with stories of alleged affairs with the President. The question is though, does this matter when it comes to him staying in the White House. Does it matter to women voters? Miguel Marquez is OUTFRONT.
KAREN MCDOUGAL, ALLEGES AFFAIR WITH DONALD TRUMP: After we had been intimate, he try to pay me.
MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The allegations of extramarital affairs -- DANIELS: He leaned around and looked at my daughter and said a beautiful little girl would be ashamed if something happened to her mom and then he was gone.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): -- and claims of grasps level that adult film actress Stormy Daniels for going public with her story --
(on camera): You still like the President, approve the job?
WHITE: I love the President. I love everything he does.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): -- hasn't shaken the President's most ardent reporters.
WHITE: Just because she's a porn star or just because she's a playmate, I don't care, you know. That's personal. And I think she should keep it personal.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): But for some Republicans who support the President today.
LYDIA MCEVOY, CLAY COUNTY REPUBLICAN OFFICIAL: I wish that sometimes his speech was more kind and more professional.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): Lydia McEvoy is an elected official in Clay County, the tax collector. She says the President's behavior has her considering options for 2020.
Support another Republican if someone came along in the primary.
MCEVOY: Potentially. It would depend on who it was. I mean it would depend if they could still put forth the same voice and the same values, but maybe do it in a different way.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): In Parkville, a picture postcard, Kansas City suburb, allegations from the porn star and the playmate about the President for some voters serve only as confirmation.
[19:20:01] Does that play into your opinion of him?
KARI HARPER, INDEPENDENT VOTER: I had -- I mean, kind of going into the original election, there were, you know, talks of things going on. I already had a low opinion of him to begin with.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): At a gathering of Republican women in next door Clay County, the allegations are viewed as old news.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Everyone does something in their past and I'm not saying that he did anything in his past, so it just doesn't bother me.
DORIS MUCK, REPUBLICAN: It is between he and God about what he has done in the past, and that's what we're talking about, the past. What we are working now with him for is our future.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): But the President's behavior might just be creating problems for his immediate political future. Missouri is home to one of the most competitive Senate races in the country. President has visited here three times throwing his support behind Republican Josh Hawley who wants to unseat the Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill.
ALEXIS WEBB-BECHTOLD, INDEPENDENT VOTER: Apathetic voter, that's what I've always been.
MARQUEZ (voice-over): Dislike of Trump has turned apathetic suburban independent nonvoters like Alexis Webb-Bechtold into a certain vote against the President in November.
WEBB-BECHTOLD: I'm not excited about the people who have staunchly stood next to him and said, "Yes, he's really awesome," because he's not.
MARQUEZ: Now, the President and the Republican Party should be in easy street places like Missouri. He won Shawnee (ph) State by 19 points, but in places like where I'm standing, the suburbs of Kansas City behind me, he's not only driving away Democrats but also independents and even some Republicans driving them away from himself and his party. Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Miguel from Parkville, Missouri.
And now, Co-Chair of the Women Vote Trump PAC, Amy Kremer, and Democratic Strategist, Keith Boykin.
Keith, you know, first to you. I know that there were two women that stood out to me there speaking to Miguel basically saying this is the past, this is between him and God. That hasn't changed, right? So more women coming forward, more disgusting stories and they are not worried about it.
KEITH BOYKIN, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: Well, yes. I'm not entirely surprised. I mean two fact points to add to this. First, in the election, 2016, 53 percent of white women voted for Donald Trump, 94 percent of black women voted for Hillary Clinton.
Second data point, if you look at a poll that was conducted several years that's connected in 2016, 30 percent of the evangelicals in 2016 said they had a problem with the politician who had moral issue, who had moral failings. But when Barack Obama was president in 2011, 72 percent of white evangelicals had a problem with people or politicians who had problems like that.
So there's clearly a hypocrisy there going on between the white evangelicals who are so critical of Bill Clinton, to Barack Obama, and they accused them of moral failings. But when Donald Trump comes in office, they're willing excuse it. He said he can stay in Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody that wouldn't be any consequences and clearly that's the case. BURNETT: One question, Amy, though is whether all of this does move on the margin. You look at the white women who voted for him, 52 percent, 53 percent, right? If that goes down to 47, 48, he could lose the whole thing on reelection, right?
So those women -- I mean, if you look at any group about how much it matters that that group in particular and there we did see one Republican woman say, I'll vote for anybody that isn't him, even if I don't give a hoot about him --
AMY KREMER, CO- CHAIR, WOMEN VOTE TRUMP: Right.
BURNETT: -- because I am upset. And the other one saying it's not professional and I don't like it. Are those warning signs for you?
KREMER: I think that the President was elected to do a job. He was elected because people wanted him to go in and shake things up in Washington D.C. We saw it in the election, both with Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton that the people across the country are tired of the status quo whether it be Democrats or Republicans, they were tired of it. They wanted a change.
A lot of independents and Democrats, too, voted for President Trump to be that disrupter and to focus on national security, jobs and the economy. And he is doing that. And at the end of the day, we can take polls until the end of time but really all that matters on is on Election Day and I believe that people vote with their pocketbook. This is all a bunch of noise.
KREMER: And I'll say this, Erin, where I live in Roswell, Georgia, I mean, people don't wake up and go to CNN Politics or Politico or Axios, like all of us who, you know, feed off of politics. They get up. They take care of their families. And what they care about is, do they have a job? Can they put food on their table?
BURNETT: To this point, "The Wall Street Journal" today wrote, its lead editorial, OK, about the issue of Stormy Daniels. They think it's a serious issue and they wrote in part this is why. "Many Trump partisans will refuse to believe it or claim it's irrelevant. But our guess is that at the margin this contributes to a growing public believe that Mr. Trump's personal flaws are undermining his chances for successful presidency." That's the big issue. They may not read every in and out, but I'll tell you one thing they all know about, they all know about Stormy Daniels on "60 Minutes."
KREMER: Yes, but sex sells.
[19:25:03] BURNETT: I don't think that the sex part of this is selling at all. I got to be honest with you. I think that part is pretty disgusting to most people.
KREMER: No, I think it is too because -- BOYKIN: It is claiming that somehow -- that people weren't paying attention to this and the President is focused on other issues and national security and the economy. But the President was --
BOYKIN: -- Donald Trump was the same one who said that if Hillary Clinton got elected the country would be engaged in scandal watching. And so nothing would be accomplish. That's exactly what's happening right now.
KREMER: They did not -- we did not elect him --
BOYKIN: And Amy, you of all people --
KREMER: -- because we thought he was a preacher or a pastor.
BOYKIN: Amy, you said that on Saturday night. I think that it's -- that's highly appropriate and hypocritical.
KREMER: It's not hypocritical. Why is it hypocritical?
BOYKIN: Amy -- here's why, OK. Amy, you defend Donald Trump despite all the pussy grabbing and the playmates and all the other stuff that is going on with the porn stars. You defended Roy Moore after he was accused of child molestation. You had no problem --
KREMER: I'm not defending their actions.
BOYKIN: Wait. Let me just finish.
BOYKIN: You defended Roy Moore despite all of that, but when Barack Obama was president, you were on CNN on this very air and this very network, and you know what you said, Barack Obama doesn't love America. What's the difference between Barack Obama, Roy Moore --
KREMER: Because he's wanted to fundamentally change America.
BOYKIN: What's the difference between Barack Obama, Roy Moore and Donald Trump?
KREMER: No. I'll tell you what.
BOYKIN: I'll tell you what the difference is.
KREMER: Oh, come on. Don't pull back. You are above that.
BOYKIN: Barack Obama is a black man and those two are white men, white Republican men you're willing to defend.
KREMER: Keith, come on. You are better than that.
BOYKIN: So you think Barack Obama just -- you should be better than that. You think that Barack Obama does not love America but you support Donald Trump and Roy Moore, a segregationist.
KREMER: No. Barack Obama wanted to fundamentally -- he wanted to fundamentally change America.
BOYKIN: You supported segregationist.
KREMER: Anybody that wants to fundamentally change America does not love America.
BOYKIN: Roy Moore supported segregation that fundamentally changes America. And you support that?
BURNETT: Amy, if Barack Obama had had an incident like this with a porn star, would you admit that the treatment of it would have been totally different?
KREMER: I mean, I think we are at a different place in time. And I was on air this morning and --
BURNETT: No. But can you answer that question honestly?
KREMER: I don't think it would have been.
BURNETT: Can we all just said that the treatment would have been different with a black president having an affair while he's married with a porn star --
BOYKIN: Are you hypocrite or a bigot? Which is it? Come on, this isn't illogical. You can't tell me that it wouldn't be the same thing with Barack Obama. If Barack Obama -- Barack Obama couldn't even wear a tan suit without being accuse of violating --
KREMER: I didn't say one thing about Barack Obama wore (ph).
BOYKIN: But you said he doesn't love America.
KREMER: Actually, I like Barack Obama as a person. I don't like his ideology, that's what I don't like.
BOYKIN: But you said he does not love America on this network. And now you defend Donald Trump and you defend Roy Moore.
KREMER: Let me say -- let me answer you. Barack Obama said he wanted to fundamentally change America. I don't believe -- if you love this country, why would you want to fundamentally change it?
BOYKIN: Donald Trump makes America great again. That's fundamentally changing America.
KREMER: No, it's not.
BOYKIN: Roy Moore wanted to bring back segregation. That's fundamentally changing America.
BURNETT: All right, we'll leave it there. Thank you both.
KREMER: And I think you're above that.
BOYKIN: You should be above defending Roy Moore and Donald Trump.
KREMER: Oh, come on, Keith.
BURNETT: Next, the census wants to know if you're a U.S. citizen. Is the President targeting immigrants or not?
And Trump's pick for CIA director, could her controversial role after 9/11 derail her confirmation, her. We'll be back.
[19:31:21] ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: Tonight, Trump under fire after his administration announced the question of citizenship will be back for the 2020 census. Critics say it means undocumented immigrants may be afraid to fill out the form which could have a major political impact on Democrats.
And the White House is doubling down.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SARAH HUCKABEE SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: We've contained this question that's provided data that's necessary for the Department of Justice to protect voters. And specifically to help us better comply with the Voting Rights Act, which is something that is important and apart of this process. And, again, this is something that has been part of the census for decades.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Tom Foreman is OUTFRONT.
So, Tom, please explain the first of all bottom line point here, why does this matter so much for Democrats?
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Bottom line, they think it could have serious, political and economic impacts on blue America. This is census right now and numbers will tell us what we are talking about here -- 327 million people every 10 years they have to count, everyone in the country, every residents, and they ask a lot of pretty serious questions. How many people are living in your household, how old are they, what's the ethnicity?
So, why would this matter so much? Well, there are about 11 million people in this country who are unauthorized or here without the proper papers to be here. And the Pew Center says most of them live in these 20 cities coast to coast that we've highlighted in yellow here. If they don't come forward to talk, that affects blue America because
look at the overlay of the presidential map from last time around. These are almost all blue areas. Places like California out there. Look at that. That's where most of these unauthorized immigrants are, and that's where the Democrats are winning governorships, the presidential race, congressional seats, legislative seats -- all of that, Erin.
BURNETT: And, obviously, they would lose some of those seats if that question came in and got honest answers, which is obviously a big question here.
The reality of it, Tom, is, of course, people who are not citizens can't legally vote. So, why is this controversial? You are saying this would still matter in voter representation even though they are not citizens.
FOREMAN: Yes, they can't vote, but there is a political fallout from it. Look at it this way, let's say you had a undercount, an inaccurate count because people would not come forward, that would effect redistricting. How many members of Congress come out of these Democratic areas could affect how many safe seats there are, and it could affect about $400 billion worth of federal funding for things like schools and infrastructure and health clinics.
This is what Democrats are worried about. This -- they are saying they could be catastrophe for many blue states out there. Republicans on the other hand are saying, look, if you are in this country illegally, you may be avoiding the census anyway. That's been a longstanding fear.
FOREMAN: One question is not going to change it all -- Erin.
BURNETT: Right, right. You know, one would imagine if that question is there and your answer is, "no, I'm not a citizen," you'd be very hesitant to check that box.
Thank you, Tom.
OUTFRONT now, former Commerce Secretary under President Obama, Gary Locke. The Commerce Department oversees the census, so he knows a lot about it. And the founder and president of Americans for Tax Reform, Grover Norquist.
So, Grover, let me start with you. Is it wrong to ask people on the census form if they are a citizen of America or not?
GROVER NORQUIST, PRESIDENT, AMERICANS FOR TAX REFORM: Well, as was pointed out, for decades this has been asked for the short form that everybody gets. And today, it's asked in the long form where they sample people and then the government says we'll guess from there.
All you are going to get with asking everybody is more accurate answers because when we do it with the ACS, the long form where they poll a fraction of the people, they then guess from there.
[19:35:06] Why would you let the government guess on these numbers rather than having real numbers?
I understand that the Democrats have concerns that they've advantaged themselves over the years with this. However, simply this is a question that's been asked for decades. It's a question that's asked now on the long form.9
BURNETT: Secretary Locke?
NORQUIST: What's the big deal?
BURNETT: Secretary Locke?
GARY LOCKE, FORMER OBAMA COMMERCE SECRETARY: Well, the last time it was asked in the survey went out to all Americans was 1950 census. The 1960 census, the 1970 census did not have that question. And as Grover indicated, I mean, they asked that question in about 15 percent of the population in the last several censuses.
But the 2010 census which was actually prepared by the Bush administration, and we in the Obama administration had to administer it, but we did it in a way that had the best response ever. We came under budget by $2 billion. But in that 2010 census prepared by the Bush administration, it was not part of the question.
In the old days, we used to have 50, 60 questions in the census form. The short form that everybody filled out had seven or eight or nine questions.
But others, 15 percent, got 52 questions asking, do you have running water. Do you have flushed toilets? How do you go to work? What time of the day to you go to work? Those were so onerous that very few people turned it in the census form.
That's why we went to a short form uniform form for everyone and periodic surveys that go out to people that asked the same mundane questions including citizenship. But those are voluntary. But what's really important is we need to have an accurate count of all the people living in America, citizen or non-citizen, documented or non- documented.
That is required by the Constitution going back to George Washington.
BURNETT: All right. So, I understand you are saying accurate count. But within that, I mean, Secretary, will let me ask you this question, because obviously the census is then used for things like how many representatives do you get in Congress and the Electoral College and all these things that determine who ends up in the White House.
So, it would seem unfair, right, you can see this argument, could you, that someone who is in this country illegally who is not a citizen is actually counted as someone who lives in a district and that count of a person goes towards that district getting a congressional head? Is that unfair? LOCKE: Well, that's not -- that's not the real issue because that has
been the problem, and I suppose the argument ever since our country was founded because even back in 1790, the first census under George Washington, you even counted slaves who are obviously not entitled to vote, could never vote. And yet, that was part of the rule of four- fifths going back to our founders.
So, this issue of counting people, the Constitution says just count the number of people living in America, whether they are tourist, whether they are foreigners, but living here.
LOCKE: And that has been the requirement of the U.S. Constitution. Never been about who is entitled to vote.
BURNETT: Grover, this is not about weighing the scales down on voting as the secretary says?
NORQUIST: If you want to get offended by questions that are asked, I think we should start with the ones on the short form. They ask you your race or ethnicity or where your great grandparents came from.
We are all Americans. And only thing that you should be asked about on the census or any government document is whether you are an American citizen or not, their requirements that American citizens have and non-citizens don't, and there are advantages being a citizen give you that not being a citizen or somebody in France doesn't get.
But it's really offensive that the government goes and asks what color your skin is or what language your grandfather spoke. There's no legitimate function of government, of American government, I see the South Africans do this or did this, but that was disgusting when they did it.
Why would we ask people's color or race or religion? They don't ask religion, but they do ask race. They do ask ethnicity. That's nonsense.
If you are a person you are a person and we should go away from the three-fifths discussion that was part of the nation to everybody who is a citizen is a citizen. That's the only thing that should matter in the United States government. Only thing that should matter to any American, not somebody's race or ethnicity, that's nonsense. Government should keep no data like that.
BURNETT: All right. I wanted --
LOCKE: But Grover is always concerned about saving U.S. taxpayer money. Secretary Ross, head of the Commerce Department who made this decision, acknowledged that including this question will result in millions of people not sending back the census form, and he says that they are therefore going to have to hire hundreds of though stands of Americans to go door to door to collect this information, which will cost the American taxpayer millions and millions, if not hundreds of millions of dollars more. [19:40:04] Again, we are supposed to count just the number of people
living in America in all parts of America because regardless of this issue of representation, whether or not a state will lose the number of congressional seats because they under-count the number of people living in that state compared to another state --
LOCKE: -- federal dollars flow to those communities whether people are citizens or non-citizens, whether they are about to become a United States citizen. I mean, are we going to ask the question are you here legally but are you applying for citizenship? Because those whether seniors or kids, they are entitled to government services.
The number of people living in a state will determine how much that state or that city gets for human services, for road building, for police, and fire, and all of those people deserve the full benefits that the U.S. government provides.
BURNETT: And just to note here, quickly, you know, 10 to 14 percent of the population in some of the top states that voted for Hillary Clinton are non-citizens, California, New York, New Jersey, Nevada. Texas is the only one in top five with the level of population that voted for the president.
So, obviously, I know you are making the point it's not linked to politics, but, of course, the way we set up the system on a certain level it is.
Before we go, I want to ask you one question, Secretary Locke, in your capacity as ambassador, we have just learned this moment, this is just breaking that Kim Jong-un did hold talks in Beijing with President Xi of China.
Your reaction to this? Obviously, you are former ambassador to China.
LOCKE: I think this is good news because we need to make sure the leader of North Korea moves forward on meeting with leader of South Korea impending talks, and it's important that president Trump and Kim Jong-un meet hopefully in May, because we need to start the process of negotiation of dialogue instead of confrontation, bellicose statements, and hopefully unintended military actions against each other, which would have millions and millions of deaths and casualties, that's what we've got to avoid.
So, sitting down is a good thing and it's good that he's visiting China because China has actually given Kim Jong-un the cold shoulder ever since he became the leader, because they are very unhappy with him too.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you both so very much.
And next, Gina Haspel nominated to be the first woman CIA director. The agency now pulling out all the stops to win over senators. It's been an uphill battle. Does she actually have the votes to make history? And anger boiling over on the streets of Sacramento tonight. An
unarmed black man shot and killed by police. We're going to go live to Sacramento tonight.
[19:46:19] BURNETT: Tonight, confirmation for President Trump's nominee for director of the CIA is in danger. Her name is Gina Haspel. She's a career CIA officer. She joined the agency in 1985. She served under cover.
And her nomination is now in question because a lot of lawmakers are raising hue and cry about her role in overseeing torture -- essentially, in this case, the so-called "black site" in Thailand during the Bush administration after September 11th, during the questioning of suspected al Qaeda operatives.
The CIA is fighting to get her through, though, launching an unprecedented effort to win over members of Congress who have expressed this concern.
Manu Raju is OUTFRONT.
Obviously, you've been talking to all these individuals. Look, she's been undercover for much for her career. What's been fascinating about this is that the CIA has been so overt in pushing her nomination.
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, absolutely, because they've realized that this is going to be a challenge getting her confirmed. Behind the scenes, Erin, we are hearing that she has been trying to assuage those concerns about her role to bring the Bush era when interrogation tactics, harsh interrogation tactics like waterboarding were front and center during that were heard, when she was overseeing that black site in Thailand.
She is essentially distancing herself from all this. She is saying, look, this is post-9/11 mindset.
RAJU: The CIA was acting differently back then. Laws were different. In 2015 is when they outlawed waterboarding. And now, she would follow the law what she says because it is no longer permissible.
And moreover, you recall in 2005, the destruction of those CIA tapes that showed harsh interrogation tactics. Well, she said she did not order the destruction of those tapes. She is telling the members of the Senate Intelligence Committee that in fact, it was their superiors that actually carried out ordered these to go forward. The ultimate question in determining whether she should be confirmed is whether or not the CIA will declassify records about her past that is something that members are pushing for.
BURNETT: The interesting thing is here is you have all this hue and cry being raised other than Mike Pompeo, everybody run the CIA since 9/11 came from this world. They were part of it. They were overseeing it. They were authorizing. They were -- because that was the mindset and those were the rules.
RAJU: No question.
BURNETT: Yet we are hearing the hue and cry about her that we haven't heard about others.
RAJU: Yes, it is interesting, and that's what's undoubtedly going to come out during the confirmation proceedings. The question is whether there or no there'd be enough Republicans to imperil this nomination. We already know one, Rand Paul is posing it. John McCain has been absent. So, if those two don't vote for her, that's not enough for her to be confirmed, unless Democrats push it over the finish line. We'll see if that happens.
BURNETT: Well, it should be very interesting, you know, especially when you add, obviously, her incredible resume and, you know, being the first woman to it as well.
Thank you very much, Manu.
And next, emotions running high in Sacramento tonight. Protesters are taking to the streets. There's been a police shooting of unarmed black man, and we are going there live tonight.
[19:50:17] BURNETT: New, tonight, police bracing for protests in Sacramento over the death of Stephon Clark, as officials pled for calm. Clark was the black father of two. He was unarmed when he was gunned down by police at his grandmother's backyard. It was at least a third high profile killing of a black man by Sacramento police in the past two years.
There's tensions rising across the country tonight. And adding to that, officials announcing today that the white officers involved in the controversial 2016 shooting death of Alton Sterling, you remember that in Louisiana, well, they're saying those officers will not face charges.
You may remember this graphic video of the confrontation with police, motivated so many across this country. Well, those police, those white officers will not be charged.
Dan Simon is OUTFRONT tonight from Sacramento.
POLICE OFFICER: Show me your gun. Show me your hands. Drop your gun.
DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): An unarmed black man dead and a community shaken. (CROWD CHANTING)
SIMON: California's capital, the latest example of what many see policing gone wrong. Two Sacramento police officers responding to a report of someone breaking car windows fired 20 shots Stephon Clark, killing him after thinking the 22-year-old was pointing a gun at them. Instead, only a cell phone was found nearby.
OFFICER #2: Like this. Something in his hands. It looked like a gun from our perspective.
SIMON: With the department under intense scrutiny, Police Chief Daniel Hahn announcing the investigation will be overseen by the state's attorney general.
DANIEL HAHN, SACRAMENTO POLICE CHIEF: I believe this will build -- help build faith and confidence in the investigation from our community.
SIMON: Among the lingering questions, why the officers turn off their microphones --
OFFICER: Hey, mute.
SIMON: -- just moments after the shooting?
Chief Hahn acknowledging that it has raised public suspicion.
HAHN: It might be, and probably is a time to not allow that anymore.
SIMON: Sworn in a year ago as the city's first African-American chief, he inherited a department where there was already deep mistrust within the black community.
(on camera): Bottom line, were the officers justified at all in the shooting?
HAHN: Well, that was what this investigation has to come to a conclusion of at the end and until all the facts are in and until we finish that, I can't answer that.
BENJAMNIN CRUMP, CLARK FAMILY ATTORNEY: We will fight for Stephon until we get justice for Stephon.
SIMON (voice-over): The Clark family has brought on top civil rights attorney, Benjamin Crump, who is expected to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the city.
The shooting has created a wave of protest but unlike other high profile protests, they have been calm with one notable exemption.
Last week, protesters blocking entrances to the Sacramento Kings basketball game. Thousands of fans couldn't get in, the stand is empty. But NBA players too have taken up the cause.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We will not stick to sports. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We will not shut up and dribble.
SIMON: With Celtics and Kings players making this powerful public service announcement.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Say his name.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stephon Clark.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Stephon Clark.
SIMON: And this gives you a sense of the community activism that is taking place in Sacramento. You see all these people here. This is a huge crowd and they are all waiting to get in to speak at the city council meeting tonight. All of them were being allowed the opportunity to speak. We expect this meeting to last to midnight, Erin, if you can believe that. We expect a lot of passion and anger inside the building.
Back to you.
BURNETT: All right. Absolutely. Thank you very much, Dan.
And next, on a much lighter note, Jeanne Moos on George W. Bush, swinging and swaying like you've never seen him before.
[19:57:49] BURNETT: Tonight, a former president cuts loose on the dance floor. Here is Jeanne Moos.
JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: George W. Bush may never top this. If his performance back on malaria day 2007 makes you nostalgic, rejoice that at age 71, he is still tearing up the dance floor.
At his nephew's wedding in Colorado, he danced with the bride to you spin me round.
Hold it. Freeze it. Does that George W. Bush remind you of anything?
Shades of the back rub he once gave German leader Angela Merkel, only at the meeting, he may have been trying to start a conga line. The memories come flooding back, tap dancing for reporters, swiveling his hips on an overseas trip.
The current White House occupant has confined himself to sword and slow dancing, though he's handed up in the past on "SNL".
TRUMP: You used to call on the cell phone --
MOOS: People tended not to laugh when too cool for school Obama danced. He even attempted to tango without practice, daring to try a dip that didn't quite work out in the end.
This is the guy who even bit his lip listening to Stevie Wonder. It takes nerve to shake it under th unblinking gaze of the public eye. That didn't stop Chris Christie from dab dancing. As a Republican then as a Democrat.
And Republican strategist Karl Rove threw strategy to the winds in the worst dance ever.
GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT: And the best humor is when you make fun of yourself.
MOOS: Will Farrell joked that Trump makes Bush looked pretty sweet.
WILL FARRELL, ACTOR: And remind you guys that I was really bad.
MOOS: Like the time you twirled your daughter in a near wardrobe malfunction.
Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.
BURNETT: Oh, I had missed that one with Jenna, that's funny.
OK. Thanks for joining us.
"AC360" starts now.