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CNN TONIGHT

Former President George H.W. Bush in Intensive Care; President's Legal Team Preparing for All Possibilities; White House and Trump: No Intentions of Firing the Special Counsel; Report: Hannity Had Government Help on Multimillion Dollar Property Deals; Report: Kushner Companies Making $250M Offer for NYC Building; POTUS Welcomes French Leader on Official State Visit; Toronto Van Attack; Waffle House Shooting. Aired 11-12a ET

Aired April 23, 2018 - 23:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[23:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

DON LEMON, CNN HOST: This is CNN TONIGHT. I am Don Lemon, it is 11:00 p.m. here on the East Coast live with the breaking news. The 41st President, George H.W. Bush in intensive care tonight. He was admitted to the hospital just hours after the funeral for his wife of 73 years, Barbara Bush. A spokesman for Houston Methodist Hospital says, the former President contracted an infection which spread to his blood, but is responding to treatments.

Also tonight, President Trump's legal team insists they are not worried about Michael Cohen flipping, but as is the President signaling he might pardon Cohen. We got Congressman Eric Swalwell to weigh in on that.

We have a lot to get to, but I want to get, but I want to get to CNN Contributor, first Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, who was White House health and policy adviser under President Obama, and also Cragg Hines is a political columnist and reporter, former reporter for the Houston Chronicle.

Gentlemen, good evening to both of you. Nice to have you on. Dr. Emanuel, the Bush's are on everyone's mind tonight.

EZEKIEL EMANUEL, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Yes.

LEMON: Former president office put out a statement that he is responding to treatment. But, I want you to talk to me about sepsis, that is what he has, and the impact on someone who is 93 years old. He will be 94 in June and he is also in failing health.

EMANUEL: Yes. So, first of all, the President has Parkinsonism disease that makes him shake. He is had a number of infections in his lung over the last few years often ending -- having him end up in the hospital for several weeks at a time. Sepsis is when you get an infection in someplace and the bacteria get into your blood and then your body and the immune system responds to it.

One of the consequences is that your blood pressure goes down. You can leak fluids out of the blood vessels into other parts of the body. Sepsis itself typically has a fairly high mortality rate and septic

shock is when the blood pressure really goes down and it's very difficult, with giving someone fluids or giving them some drugs to debt their blood pressure up to actually get your blood pressure back up.

So I assume the appropriate treatment he is getting are antibiotics and fluids and monitoring in the intensive care unit. And he may be on what we call vasopressors. Those are drugs that keep the blood vessels tight so that the blood pressure can go up. I don't know that for sure. But that would be the kinds of treatment he would get. This as I mentioned has a high mortality rate.

LEMON: Yes. And we wish him well. And again, everyone is rooting for him. Again, he is in failing health. His wife just died. I want to talk to you in a moment about broken heart syndrome, because if that is true, you know that is very real as well.

EMANUEL: Right.

LEMON: But Craig, you have reported on the Bushes for a long time now.

CRAGG HINES, POLITICAL COLUMNIST: About 50 years.

LEMON: Yes, you spoke with someone close to the family since the news about the former President broke. What can you tell us, Craig?

HINES: Well, I think he was -- they were going the let him do what he wanted to do exactly during Mrs. Bush's -- the greeting at the church and then the funeral. He was not going to be denied. And he did, I imagine exactly what he wanted to do. But at the same time, everyone knew that frailty involved, it could be you know, quickly spiral out of control as sepsis, as the doctor said, can.

LEMON: So I want to bring in now CNN Presidential Historian, Douglas Brinkley. Doug, welcome to the panel. You know, we see this photo, we will put I up now, the former President alongside his daughter Dora looking at his wife casket. You know, we are all thinking about tonight is the timing of this. Just days after he laid to rest the love of his life.

DOUGLAS BRINKLEY, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Well, that is right. I mean George Herbert Walker Bush is obviously broken hearted, exhausted. He had to basically be the host of events in Houston and college station. And he is been in and out of Methodist Hospital the last few years. So I think his body is just sort of worn out. The timing of it is the whole country is just praying for him right now.

We had almost a great remembrance of Barbara Bush that was bipartisan. Everybody in the country is mourning her death. So to get this shocking news today that he is in this kind of state has everybody kind of frozen right now, while praying that he will pull through.

LEMON: Yes. You know, Craig, talk to me more about the love story between Barbara and George Bush, please. HINES: Well, it began at a Christmas dance. And it moved quickly.

And you know, with what do they have -- you know, 73 years to show for it. And a great family. I mean, you know, politics aside, totally, this is, in fact, part of the end of the greatest generation.

[23:05:15] He was a decorated war hero. She was at home. They raised a family. Everything -- and you have to remember also, that the Bushes, that politics is public service.

LEMON: Yes.

HINES: And because it goes -- his father was a Senator. And you know, members of the family before that were heavily involved. And you have even now George P. in Texas. So it's -- some people would like to think of it as the family business. In some instances, it is. But it is also a tradition of public service.

LEMON: Doctor Emanuel, I wanted to get the other panelist in before I ask you about the said touched on it earlier, but let's talk about a broken heart. Can that be a factor that impacts someone medically?

EMANUEL: So, you are right, which is researchers have followed married couples. And when one person dies, the spouse has a dramatically increased rate of mortality in the next few months. 20 percent or more, compared to other couples where one spouse doesn't die at an older age. So you do see that there is something like a broken heart syndrome, which is one when your spouse dies, you die.

I actually remember when my grandmother on my mother's side died. My grandfather kind gave up and was, you know, unfortunately we quickly had to bury him. So this, you know, I can't live without my spouse feeling does seem to be real. And what the researchers also point out is, it's all cause. It's not just they die from, say, a heart attack. They die from infection. They die from cancer. They die from heart attacks as well. So it does seem to be a real phenomenon. And we may be witnessing that in the case of George Bush.

LEMON: So sad. Doug, we see this photo. We'll put it up. This is what everyone is talking about. This is the one that everyone is talking about. It's Bush 41 with his son, Bush 43, the first lady, Laura Bush, the Obamas, the Clintons, and Melania Trump, the first lady. Talk to me about the relationship with these other Presidents, particularly with Bill Clinton.

BRINKLEY: Well, Bush 41 and Bill Clinton became -- Bill became his like younger brother. They got incredibly close. Part of it was their philanthropy together, but they decided to like each other. It was amazing here it was that Bill Clinton beat 41 in 1992, but yet they formed this enduring friendship. And Michelle Obama just adores Bush 41. They have a lot of fun together.

And President Obama, Don, told me one of the most moving moments of his presidency, when he flew to Texas. It was a rainy day, and there at the Tarmac giving him a salute was Bush 41. And he could -- in a wheelchair, and he said you are my President and you are in my state and I came to see you arrive. There is a new found love for Bush 41. We saw this happen with Harry Truman get a revision. And Gerald Ford

where people now think he was right to pardon Nixon and get us out of the Vietnam War. the last few years to the Jon Meacham biography and some documentaries, people are calling 41 the great foreign policy president, due to overseeing the German reunification, the breakup of the Soviet Union, the Gulf War, Noriega and Panama. It is a very large record and the American public also which just said sees him as the last of the greatest generation. So, in saluting and praying for him right now, people are thinking about that generation that is now in their 90s.

LEMON: Yes. It's interesting, when you talk about all the relationships as well. You mentioned 41. And Mrs. Obama. 43 and Mrs. Obama are also good friends. It really is a club and you know, he beat you -- you are familiar --

BRINKLEY: Yes.

LEMON: -- you are familiar with what happened. And I think you have a lot of empathy, because you know that is probably the toughest job in the universe. You know, Craig, we are talking about a former President who has been in fragile health lately. But you know, we are also talking about someone who just a few years ago went sky diving. He is a fighter.

HINES: He is definitely a fighter. And of course Mrs. Bush had had enough of the jumping and at one time she said it's going to be his last, one way or the other. And they dealt with great -- you know n Kenny Bunk Port, you know, he was out on a run and the pool would go with him and he would say, come on, let's go watch the women play tennis. It's like watching the grass grow, because he was famous for the speed boat and you know, these kinetic rounds of golf.

[23:10:09] But you also have to remember that they functioned almost seamlessly, one knowing what the other was thinking. And we now know the story of the doctor. He had been upstairs to see Mrs. Bush. Goes downstairs. And as he leaves the room, Mrs. Bush says to give a message to the President and tell him I love him.

LEMON: Wow.

HINES: It was just that sort of -- you know, it might sound maudlin, but it really was, you know a great love.

LEMON: Yes. And listen, Jon Meacham told some really great stories, too, as he memorialized her at the funeral. Doctor Emanuel, I just want to ask you quickly, how do they -- since you ae considering what you said he has Parkinson's, his health is frail, how do they figure out, how do they determine how aggressively to deal with this?

EMANUEL: Well, that is something you have to discuss with the patient, if he is conscious and capable. If he is not, he -- let's hope filled out an advanced directive and designated someone to make decisions for him. And then you have to see, you know, it is the sepsis reversing with the fluids and the antibiotics? If the sepsis isn't reversing, what would he want them to do? Again, you know, if he is in septic shock and his blood pressure is

really low, the mortality rate is pretty high, over 40 percent. And, you know, you may not at his age want to do that. Clearly Mrs. Bush decided that enough was enough, and she had put an end to it.

We don't know how George Bush has been thinking about this. It's undoubtedly the case that he has been thinking about it. Can I just make one other point?

LEMON: yes, quickly because I have to get to the break. Sorry go ahead.

EMANUEL: I have doing a lot of reading about World War II. And one of the remarkable things about people like George W. Bush is, you know, here is a man who was at the top of American society and who felt very obliged to go and fight for the country. And as mentioned, he was a tremendous war hero.

Many, many people in that generation, it is part of what makes them the greatest generation all through society from, you know, the ivy leagues down to the farms went to fight. And that is I think something about national service that we might not have the same kind of spirit today, and you know, it's quite admirable in George Bush. I think the country ought to take pause and think about that.

LEMON: I keep going back to the love story. I think if I have the number correctly. I think he named three of his planes when he was in the war Barbara, so I think that is fine is dandy. It is a very sweet story. We wish him the best and we thank you all for being on this evening. Thank you so much.

When we come back, the White House insisting they have no intention of firing Special Counsel, Robert Mueller. We are going to ask a member of the House Intel Committee if he believes, that Congressman Eric Swalwell, joins me next.

[23:15:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: The White House would like you to believe it's business as usual tonight, but the questions swirling about the Mueller investigation and the about the possibility that the President might pardon Michael Cohen, this is not exactly business as usual.

Joining me now is Congressman Eric Swalwell, he is a member of the House Intelligence Committee. Thank you for joining us.

REP. ERIC SWALWELL, (D), CALIFORNIA: Yes. Thanks for the invite.

LEMON: I appreciate it. I want to start with something that we heard from the White House, this is earlier today about the Special Counsel. Watch this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SARAH SANDERS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: As we've said many times before, we have no intention of firing the Special Counsel. We have been beyond cooperative with him. We are continuing to cooperate with them. Turned over nearly -- over a million pages in documents to the Special Counsel and have been cooperative. Exactly what the President has been saying all along, that this was a false premise. That this entire thing started on. We continue to repeat that we think that the idea that the Trump campaign was involved in any collusion with Russia is a total witch-hunt.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: So the White House maintains that they have no intention of firing the Special Counsel. The President has tried it at least twice though. But do you believe him now?

SWALWELL: No. No. And his answer changes every week. You know, last week it was that he has the power to do it. He continues to undermine what Bob Mueller is doing. If he has no intention of firing Special Counsel Mueller or Rod Rosenstein, he should support the legislation and encourage Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan to bring forward the bipartisan legislation that would cement in place, Bob Mueller's investigation and only allow him to be fired for cause.

LEMON: Yes. Good luck with that. Good luck with that. So listen, he sent off a lot of tweets over the weekend. And I just want to ask you about one in particular, OK? He said James Comey memos are classified. I did not declassified them. They belong to our government, therefore he broke the law. Additionally he totally made up many of the things he said I said and he is already a proven liar and leaker. Where are the memos on Clinton, Lynch, and others? So, he is painting with a very broad brush here, but the details the surrounding the classification of these memos are much more nuances than that.

SWALWELL: The FBI Director also has classification authorities. And at the time he claims that, you know, what he released was not classified. Again, the truth is, James Comey came forward to the American people. He raised his right hand and under oath in front of a number of congressional committees testified to what the President did.

The President has been unwilling to do that, Don. He actually is unwilling to do something that he said you should hold against somebody if they are unwilling to do it. During the campaign he told Hillary Clinton, only the mob takes the Fifth Amendment. So far, he can't even prove to us that he is not running this White House like a mobster. He should be forthcoming, sit down in Bob Mueller's chair, answer questions and let us clear this once and for all for the American people.

LEMON: Speaking of taking the fifth. That is a possibility, there are a number of possibilities for Michael Cohen. But he -- there is a question about whether he is going to pardon Michael Cohen. The press secretary said -- you know, she wouldn't quite rule it out. But do you think he is considering it?

SWALWELL: Well, he is running a pardon hotline at the White House, were Sylvester Stallone is calling in. He is essentially, you know, showing Michael Cohen and Paul Manafort and others that he is willing, you know, to pardon people. Even Joe Arpaio. His case hadn't even run its course.

Earlier this evening I was at a screening for a movie called, Active Measures, it is a documentary, and it is coming out and it lays out what Russia did and all of the Trump family members who worked with him.

[23:20:02] All right, Don, looking back at individuals like Michael Cohen and Paul Manafort, it is hair raising and it is un-American, and its frankly surprising to me, that more Republicans aren't coming forward and just saying, we are going to unite and do all we can to keep this from happening again.

LEMON: Why do you classify it as hair raising? What about it is hair raising?

SWALWELL: That we allowed it to happen and we didn't stop it while it was happening right in front of us and that we continue to allow the Russians to be in our systems, interfere in upcoming elections as they have said they will and we are not showing the unity, putting up the shield that Republicans and Democrats would normally put up when our country is attacked.

LEMON: Yes. The White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short he told CNN today that there is no need to pardon Cohen at this point. That is quote. Do you think pardoning him at this stage would be an obstruction of justice?

SWALWELL: You know, the President has broad pardon power, but that doesn't mean he can't be held accountable by Congress. To me that would qualify as a high crime and that he should be brought before the House Intelligence -- The House Judiciary Committee and foreign impeachment proceedings. That would be committing a crime in broad daylight.

LEMON: Would that be a constitutional crisis, you think?

SWALWELL: Yes, and he shouldn't do that and Republicans and Democrat should show the same willingness they did during Watergate to hold and out of control President accountable, if he did.

LEMON: Do you think they would?

SWALWELL: Not this Republican Congress.

LEMON: No?

SWALWELL: No. But, you know what, the people speaking up, showing up in the streets, going to town halls that pressure is working. I think it's constraining the President's efforts, and if people are not willing to hold the President accountable, the people are going to hold them accountable this November and I think you will see much different Congress.

LEMON: Thank you, Swalwell. Always a pleasure. SWALWELL: Yes. My pleasure.

LEMON: Good to see you. When we come back, we are following the money, everything we know about Michael Cohen and President Trump's business relationship and what could be at stake for both after the raid on Cohen.

[23:25:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: The White House not ruling out the possibility of President Trump that he could pardon Michael Cohen. But what did the FBI raid turn up? And just what could it mean for Cohen and the President? Let's discuss now. Special correspondent for Vanity Fair, William Cohan, investigative journalist and author, Vicky Ward. They are both here. Let's hope I can get through this without calling you Michael. Cohen and Cohan. Sorry about that. When he walked on the set, I said, how are you doing Michael?

WILLIAM COHAN, SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT, VANITY FAIR: When I saw him at lunch the other day.

LEMON: You did. So, listen, it is clear that the president, he is worried about the FBI and what could had been swept up in this rates, how intertwined do you think are Cohen and the President in terms of their business and personal dealings?

COHAN: He was the gatekeeper to Donald Trump. So in the years before he was a candidate, and I wrote two pieces about him, one for the "Atlantic," one for "Vanity Fair." My first step every time was Michael Cohen. That was the first conversation I had to have to get anywhere near Donald Trump. So once I was vetted by Michael Cohen, you know, what was he doing talking to journalists?

I mean, he is just the guy who was his right hand man. So when you raid the right hand man of Donald Trump's law offices and his home and sweep up his computer and have a warrant from a Judge to do that. That means there is probable cause. I suspect there is quite a lot to it.

LEMON: So what does that say about their relationship or what they could have found or what Michael Cohen knows about the President. Because they are not ruling out the possibility of pardoning him. Go on Vicky.

VICKI WARD, AUTHOR AND INVESTIGATIVE JOURNALIST: Right. I was just also thinking, you know it is quite interesting after the raid happened there was that photograph of Michael Cohen smoking a cigar with a whole bunch of guys.

LEMON: They were smoking a cigar, I'm not sure he was.

WARD: There was no family around him, but there were -- two of the guys were, you know, intricately linked to the Trump organization and to the Kushner organization. So it was quite interesting, I thought. You know, these were the people, he sort of turned to in his moment of what is crisis, right? COHAN: Well, one of them I think was the CFO of Deutsche Bank.

WARD: A former CFO of Deutsche Bank, the private wealth group which is --

COHAN: The only bank that lends money to Donald Trump.

WARD: And they founded that Kushner's, the base of the "New York Times" building, which this -- if that deal is being looked at.

LEMON: So, what do you guys think?

WARD: Well, it raises so many questions, doesn't it, Don? I mean, it's clearly a real problem.

LEMON: I do find it fascinating that, he is out and about and you know sitting there and just out and about in New York just doing --

COHAN: Business as usual.

WARD: Right.

COHAN: Acting as though he is not affected buy it. Which I give him credit for that, I mean, honestly he could be cowering in the corner. I mean most people probably would be cowering in a corner if the FBI raided their home and their law offices with a search warrant that had been approved by a Judge, so --

LEMON: Yes.

WARD: But it is a classic -- I mean, this is had all these families we are talking about -- it's what they do, right? It is what Trump does. It's what the Kushner's did. You know, when Charlie Kushner went to jail, what did the Kushner's do? They bought the most expensive building in New York. I mean, they didn't sit there and move to, you know, Los Angeles and change their name. They came back bigger. I mean that is a sort of, this is the world of New York real estate. That is what you do.

LEMON: Yes. So, can we talk -- speaking of real estate, let's talk about this. It's sort of a different topic, but the same. One of his clients, which is Sean Hannity. The Guardian is reporting tonight that the Fox news host has spent at least $90 million buying up 870 homes in seven states. Got the help of mortgages for some of them for the buildings from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Is that a problem given that Hannity is one of the President's biggest promotors on cable news? Do you think that is a problem?

WARD: I think the problem is that he didn't disclose the -- and then he did the interview with Ben Carson. And I know that he said, well, I'm not a -- that sort of straightforward journalist, but he is on what purports to be a news network. So the lack of disclosure to me is the big problem there.

COHAN: Yes. I agree with that. I mean, private citizen, he should be able to make investments if he wants to. WARD: Yes.

COHAN: I am astounded by the fact that he can buy $90 million worth of real estate.

WARD: Well, he got advice from Michael Cohen.

(LAUGHTER)

COHEN: Well, I guess it so big and go home, I mean --

LEMON: I agree with you, I think -- listen, if he would, what he does with Sean Hannity, that is his own personal business, but the fact that he didn't disclose this when he interviewed Ben Carson, who is the HUD secretary, I'm just wondering if that --

COHAN: Well, I mean, look, it depends, you know, when he got these loans from HUD and when Ben, you know, did he get them Ben Carson was --

LEMON: Right.

COHAN: Probably got them before Ben Carson was the HUD secretary.

WARD: I think it was --

COHAN: Yes, he should have disclosed it. He should have said, I have $90 million worth of loans from HUD and I'm interviewing Ben Carson. But, you know, I think when it comes to Sean Hannity, this is relatively minor.

WARD: Yes. I agree with you.

LEMON: So, listen, what you mentioned the Kushner companies, all right --

WARD: Yes.

LEMON: -- because I want to talk about the president's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, his family businesses. We know that the Kushner companies, they are struggling to afloat financially after the 666 Fifth Avenue deal. But now they are reportedly making $250 million offer to buy a luxury Park Avenue building. Where do you think all this money is coming from? Where is this money coming from?

WARD: OK, so, you know, I wrote a book about New York real estate. I'm looking into Kushner heavily now. My sources in that world tell me that we shouldn't make too much of this. That you know, when you send -- first of all, this kind of message go out all the time. And they don't mean anything. Until actually a deal is closed, it really means nothing.

And most of the time, these kind of letters go out in secret because the last thing you want is for competitors to come in and offer more. So I would, you know, a lot of people are really dubious that the Kushners do have any money behind them, that this is Charlie Kushner trying to change the narrative away from --

LEMON: This is P.R.?

WARD: This is P.R. This is Charlie Kushner trying to sort of say here I am, take the storyline away from Jared, take the storyline away from 666. And it's a bid to say hey, look, I got this money. The Kushners have never built in New York before. So, you know, it doesn't mean they couldn't. They could partner with Gary Barnett. They have done that before. But most people I have spoken to think this does not smell right. It is probably a great bluff.

COHAN: Let me interject another line of thinking here because, you know, they disclosed an offer to this co-op on Park Avenue, one of the few co-op buildings that's below 57th street. Apparently, you only need two-thirds of the people to approve as opposed to a hundred. And I have never heard of a developer offering to buy a co-op that's established. There obviously --

LEMON: People around the country are going, what are you talking about a co-op versus condo and cooperatives. You don't actually own -- you own it but --

COHAN: Your own shares.

LEMON: Shares in the corporation, yes.

COHAN: So you have to have a vote and they only need two-thirds and they got -- apparently 80 percent of the people have agreed that this is an offer that values each of their apartments at like $7 million. So, I mean, to have come this far and to have it be a big bluff and be $250 million and not have it, and then you combine with, you know, the Vornado Realty deal at 666 Fifth Avenue, you probably know more about this than I do.

But when you are saying -- when Steven Roth says to the FCC, I have a handshake deal with the Kushners to take me out, where are the Kushners getting all this money? That's what I would like to know. Whether it is the 250 for the Park Avenue coop or the handshake deal with Steven Roth at Vornado for 666, where are they getting this money?

LEMON: All right. What is the status of the 666? We've heard so much about it, that it is a complete debacle.

WARD: Right. It is the biggest parlor guessing game in town.

COHAN: Yes.

WARD: Most people think they are not going to get it. They have to pay Steven Roth back, right. So that's about, you know, it was $80 million, probably another $80 when he get --

COHAN: They owe $1.4 billion on their mortgage in 10 months.

WARD: Right.

COHAN: Where are they going to get that money?

WARD: This is like -- it's like Monopoly. It is like a mixture of monopoly and poker.

LEMON: Charlie Kushner tells CNN Tonight that he feels his family businesses are target of President Trump's political opponents. He calls it discrimination.

WARD: Oh, please.

COHAN: What it is is he owes a bank or a series of banks $1.4 billion on 666 Fifth Avenue in 10 months and he has to pay it off or lose that building. That's what it is. It has nothing to do with politics or political opponents.

LEMON: Can you imagine how much the common man relates to this? I mean this is the common man presidency.

COHAN: The common man out there elected a New York real estate guy to be president of the United States. They must understand something about it.

LEMON: It's all --

(LAUGHTER)

LEMON: I don't want to get in trouble. Thank you very much. When we come back, President Trump playing host to the French president and his wife. Macron says he and Trump have a special relationship. Will this trip test Macron's Trump whisperer skills?

[23:35:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: We have some breaking news tonight on the van attack in Toronto that left 10 people dead. The suspect is 25-year-old Alek Minassian. He is in custody tonight. Authorities say he left a trail of destruction nearly a mile long.

The White House is putting out a statement tonight saying, quote, the United States stands with the Canadian people in the aftermath of today's tragic event in Toronto where a van drove into a crowd of people killing several and injuring many more. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of those affected, and we wish a full recovery to those injured. The United States government pledges to provide any support Canada may need.

I want to turn to President Trump and the First Lady welcoming French President Emmanuel Macron and his wife to the White House tonight. The start of an official state visit.

Here to discuss, CNN Contributor, Michael D'Antonio, the author of "The Truth About Trump" and CNN Global Affairs Analyst, Max Boot, a senior fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations, and he is the author of "The Road Not Taken."

Good evening, gentlemen. Thank you so much for joining us. This is a very first official state visit for the Trump administration. The president had a few shaky moments with foreign leaders, a pretty good relationship though with President Macron, right?

MAX BOOT, CNN GLOBAL AFFAIRS ANALYST: Macron is one of the few Democratic leaders who figured out how to handle Trump.

[23:40:04] And so giving him stuff that he really enjoys like the military parade on Bastille Day, for example. The other one of course is Shinzo Abe who figured out that Trump likes playing golf and he probably lets Trump win. I mean, it's pretty obvious how to handle somebody like Trump.

But people like Chancellor Merkel or Prime Minister Theresa May just don't get the hang of it or can't deal with it because they are women or whatever reason just don't have that chemistry with him. Macron does seem to have it.

LEMON: Do you think they are playing him?

BOOT: Absolutely. He is so easily manipulated. It's child play, literally. All you have to do is flatter him and you got him eating out of the palm of your hand. We've seen people like Putin do it and Macron has learned that lesson.

LEMON: So why can't a woman do that? Why do you think you said the women can't deal with it?

BOOT: I think there is -- I mean, you know, maybe you can speak to them more than I can but I think, I mean, he is so sexist and he has such a horrible relationship with these strong women who are not subservient enough I think for him like Chancellor Merkel or Prime Minister May that they have just never gotten along.

LEMON: Do you think it's (INAUDIBLE)?

(LAUGHTER)

LEMON: Do you agree with what he says about the women?

MICHAEL D'ANTONIO, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I agree. He doesn't have trouble with Ivanka, who is his daughter. That's about the only strong woman I have heard of that he gets along with. He -- with Macron, I think met a younger man who seems quite confident in his own power.

You know, we had that handshake moment that seemed to go forever and ever. But that proves something to Trump. It proves that Macron was willing to meet him where he was. And to play these macho games. And there is some mutual respect there, I think.

LEMON: What's the key? Because Macron has -- he has -- he hasn't been shy about criticizing Trump, but he has found a way to deal with him effectively. What is the key here?

D'ANTONIO: Well, I think it's the respect that he showed to Trump in Paris. You have this military parade. He allows Trump to strut his stuff and feel all puffed up. This all works with this president. And I think the world owes a debt to Emmanuel Macron because he's someone who can speak some sense to the president even as the president is reducing the number of people in the White House who can speak some sense to him.

BOOT: That doesn't necessarily mean he is going to be able to get Trump to do what makes sense. Shinzo Abe found that out when he has got a pretty good relationship with Trump but Japan was still targeted on the steel tariffs and he couldn't get Trump to budge on that.

LEMON: I wonder how much it benefits Macron and even France because if he has alienated other countries, is there an opportunity here for France?

BOOT: Macron has certainly become the leading leader in Europe because he has this relationship with Trump that nobody else has. So he has become kind of a Trump whisperer for the whole continent. There is no question that he is elevating his own status and France's status by being able to get along better with Trump than other leaders in Europe can.

LEMON: So let's talk more about the parade. You talk about the Bastille Day parade.

(LAUGHTER)

LEMON: Last July, the president got the idea of having a military parade at the Bastille Day parade there. What message would a military parade, Michael, send the U.S.? What will the U.S. send by doing that?

D'ANTONIO: I think it would show that are comparable to other American democracies, most of them south of Mexico. You know, we would once again have this idea of strong man leader reinforced by a military show of strength which is absolutely meaningless.

It's not something that's in our cultural DNA. It's not something that we have done for a reason. I think it's because we have led through quiet strength and through diplomacy. But there's nothing quiet about this president and there's very little that's diplomatic about him.

BOOT: What's striking to me is that trump still has not visited a war zone. He still has not visited our troops downrange in harm's way. And he's not really interested in what troops are actually doing while they are deployed.

He has this kind of fantasy that I think goes back to his days at the New York Military Academy that troops are folks that strut around in uniforms which, you know, if you talk to real soldiers, they don't view that as being real soldiering, they view that as being basically a broadway show. But that's what he is interested in. He is not interested in the reality.

D'ANTONIO: Well, in fact, he even told me that he thought that his experience at that military academy was comparable to being in the service.

LEMON: Is it?

D'ANTONIO: That's what he said. He said it was like I was in the real military because I had four years at this school and it was really tough.

LEMON: Didn't he go because he was a troubled kid or something?

D'ANTONIO: It was that or reform school.

LEMON: Yes.

D'ANTONIO: This is the kind of place he was sent to.

BOOT: And of course his other famous quote about how not catching a sexually transmitted disease (INAUDIBLE) Vietnam. He felt like a brave Vietnam veteran.

D'ANTONIO: Well, right. That and four deferments will keep you out of service.

(LAUGHTER)

[23:45:00] LEMON: It's hard to take this stuff seriously, right? Thank you all. Thank you both. I appreciate it. Another President Trump's nominations may be in trouble tonight. Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee raising concerns about the allegations involving the White House doctor, Admiral Ronny Jackson, President Trump's nominee to lead Veterans Affairs.

Sources tell CNN that committee members have been told about allegations relating to improper conduct in various stages of his career. None of the senators would talk about the specifics of the allegation but the committee is reportedly in talks to delay Wednesday's confirmation hearings.

Now for the music and the tease. When we come back, the man suspected of killing four people inside a Waffle House is in custody tonight. Any questions are being raised about whether his attack was racially motivated. We are going to discuss that next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: A suspect under arrest in Tennessee tonight, accused of murdering four people at Waffle House. Twenty-nine-year-old Travis Reinking taken into custody after a 35-hour manhunt. He is accused of opening fire at the restaurant early Sunday morning. A young man named James Shaw Jr. managed to wrestle the gun out of Reinking's hands, but he insists he is not a hero.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[23:50:05] JAMES SHAW JR., WRESTLED GUN AWAY FROM SHOOTER: Heroes seemed kind of like they are not touchable. If I'm looked at as a regular person, if somebody else is in this situation, they have that same thing within them, that they can project that also.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Joining us now, CNN National Security Analyst, Juliette Kayyem and Law Enforcement Analyst, Charles Ramsey. Why do you think he's a hero? I don't know about you guys, but I think he is definitely a hero.

Listen, Juliette, the shooter, Travis Reinking, was apprehended just a short time ago after a day-long manhunt. What questions do you have tonight?

JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: So, mostly, to motivation, I think at this stage. There's -- people who know -- in the south know this, a lot of Waffle Houses. Why this one? And why were all the victims people of color? And so, the question of what his motivation was rang clear to me sort of the moment I saw who the victims were.

And then, obviously, though there's no belief in it right now, were others involved or was he involved with others? He seems like a loner, someone who's father sort of had a lot of guns and he had a lot of mental issues. But those would be sort of the issues I would focus on and whether this wasn't a hate crime, given the victims and given him.

LEMON: Charles, Reinking owns at least four firearms which he had to surrender after a series of mental health and legal problems including crossing a barrier at the White House. Authority gave the guns back to Reinking's father. Of those four members, one was a Bushmaster AR-15- style rifle, recovered from the shooting scene at the Waffle House. What should have happened to those weapons?

CHARLES RAMSEY, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, first of all, the father shouldn't have given them back to him, but apparently he did, and now we see what happened. But again, that just shows weaknesses in our gun laws. We can't effectively seize weapons and keep them out of the hands of people that should not have them. And clearly, he's an individual that should not have possession of these kinds of weapons.

LEMON: Yes. Do you agree with Juliette? She said immediately she knew what his motivation was, at least what she thought it was when she saw the color of the victims. Do you think it was racially motivated?

RAMSEY: Well, I mean, it's hard to tell, because he does have some mental health issues. I don't know why he chose that particular Waffle House. Obviously, you'd have to think that's a possibility. But I believe now the police will do everything they can to try to find out exactly what the motive is.

My understanding is that he's gotten a lawyer. I don't think he's really talking. But certainly, they'll be looking at his social media. They probably are executing search warrants, doing everything they can to get more information about this individual to see if it leads them to a motive of some kind.

LEMON: Juliette, the president often tweets quickly after incidents like this, when it involves Muslims, for example, but he hasn't tweeted about the Waffle House shooting. Why do you think that is?

(LAUGHTER)

KAYYEM: Why do you think that is? Because there's no political gain here. There is no politics that he can play to divide us, in terms of Islamophobia or anti-Muslim issues, if it were a terrorism incident perpetrated by someone who was inspired by ISIS. This is a white defendant and the victims are African-American.

The hero, because he is a hero, is also African-American. And so, once again, this is a story in which the president sort of ignores the sort of -- the diversity in America. He only wants to focus on a certain kind of violence, and it's really horrible, because when you think about James Shaw Jr., I mean, this is someone who we should just be celebrating as a nation, and that the White House should be celebrating.

A man who is so modest who is trying to raise money for the victims' families. It's just -- he seems like the kind of person you would want to embrace, if you were president of -- if you were a different president of the United States.

LEMON: I'll ask you the same question, Charles. He often tweets quickly about these incidents involving Muslims, but not about this. Why do you think?

RAMSEY: I have no idea. I mean, I can't figure President Trump out, and I don't think I'm even going to try, to be honest with you.

(LAUGHTER)

RAMSEY: You know, this is a tragic situation we have here, but Mr. Shaw showed a tremendous amount of courage tackling the individual. You know, we tell people all the time, if you find yourself in an active shooter situation, you know, run, hide and fight. 2 And he got to a point where he made the right decision, because had he not done that, he probably would have lost his own life and certainly others in that restaurant probably would have died, as well. So, it's a tragedy all the way around, but why the president does what he does, God only knows.

LEMON: I'm just wondering, for you, I'm just wondering if it's a -- if it's a leadership, like a teachable lesson about leadership, that's it.

[23:55:05] That's why I asked you, considering your background. But I just -- I want to end on the positive note, if you can, about this because it's really tragic, and talk more about James Shaw Jr., a true hero, saved many lives, actually went to church Sunday morning with his father, just a few hours after disarming the gunman. How often do we see real people acting this heroically? We don't very often, Juliette.

KAYYEM: That's exactly right. And to pick up on what the chief said, you know, in that moment, who knows what any of us individually would do, right? And the fact that he -- I heard him say it on one of the interviews, he was going to make the assailant work for that kill. In other words, he knew that he just had two options. And so he is someone obviously to be celebrated, I think, in terms of his -- not only his heroism, but his sort of, you know, looking out for everyone else. And in this time of not very good news, I like thinking about him and what he did.

LEMON: Juliette Kayyem and Charles Ramsey, thank you both. Have a good evening. I appreciate it.

KAYYEM: Thank you.

LEMON: That's it for us tonight. Thanks for watching. I'll see you right back here tomorrow.

[24:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)