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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT

Giuliani Accuses Mueller Of Acting In "Bad Faith" Over Potential Trump Interview: "They Haven't Gotten Back To Us In 10 Days"; Giuliani Says Collusion Not A Crime After Trump Denied Collusion, Sources: Bob Woodward To Release New Book On Trump. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired July 30, 2018 - 19:00   ET

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


[19:00:05] NICK WATT, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: -- where this is going to go next. Wolf?

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: So heartbreaking, indeed. Nick Watts, thank you. "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.

ERIN BURNETT, OUTFRONT HOST: OutFront next, President Trump says he'll meet with anyone, including the leader of Iran, with no preconditions. So why is it totally different when it comes to Bob Mueller? What is he totally afraid of?

Plus, Rudy Giuliani taking a sledgehammer to the heart of Trump's Russia defense. Did Trump collude with Russia or not? And a former Trump organization exec that he regularly swept his office because he thought he was being bugged by Trump. And that executive is OutFront tonight with his story. Let's go OutFront.

And good evening, I'm Erin Burnett. OutFront tonight, bad faith. President Trump's top lawyer accusing Bob Mueller of acting in bad faith about a sit-down interview with President Trump.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RUDY GIULIANI, ATTORNEY TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: They haven't gotten back to us in 10 days over our recommendation of how to do an interview. I'm sure they're in bad faith about an interview at this point.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Bad faith is a big charge, especially coming from Rudy Giuliani and team Trump. Consider this, Trump's lawyers have tried to set preconditions most lawyers wouldn't even consider for this quote, unquote, sit-down, including written answers. I mean, obviously, who knows who would even write those answers.

And there are more preconditions Trump tried to set, like the interview can't be more than three hours, it can't touch on the topic of obstruction of justice at all. The list goes on and on. And it seems a bit absurd. And on top of those games, Trump is going after Mueller's investigation itself, calling the Russia probe a hoax, a witch hitch and now slamming Mueller personally.

Tweeting this weekend in part, "Is Robert Mueller ever going to release his conflicts of interest with respect to President Trump, including the fact that we had a very nasty and contentious business relationship. I turned him down to head the FBI, one day before appointment as Special Counsel and Comey is his close friend." Conflicts of interest. OK. Let's just be clear because sometimes dates really matter, right? A timeline matters.

We are talking here now here at the very end of July, 2018. Bob Mueller was named Special Counsel 439 days ago. Frankly, we all know that if Trump did, in fact, have a very nasty and contentious business relationship with Mueller, he wouldn't have held it in for 439 days. Now, he did interview Mueller as a potential replacement for the former FBI Director Jim Comey. Now, that's a pretty hard thing to imagine Trump doing if he really did have a very nasty and contentious business relationship with Mueller.

The truth is this, not only has it been 439 days since Mueller was named, the President waited months and months and months, he waited until March of this year before attacking Mueller by name for the first time. And it escalated quickly from there. In April, the month Michael Cohen's home and office were raided by FBI agents and Comey released his book contradicting Trump's account of their interactions, Trump mentioned witch hunt nine times on Twitter.

And then look at these bar charts. By June, the President had attacked the investigation as a witch hunt 25 times in that month alone. Early at the beginning of the year, you see these skinny bars, right? It was one to three times a month and then this huge surge. And the President's maligning of Mueller took off on camera too.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Witch hunt, witch hunt, witch hunt. Witch hunt, witch hunt, witch hunt. Witch hunt, witch hunt, witch hunt. It's a witch hunt. It is a pure witch hunt. Right now it's a pure witch hunt. Witch hunt, witch hunt. Witch hunt. Witch hunt. Witch hunt. The rigged witch hunt, witch hunt. Witch hunt, witch hunt, witch hunt, witch hunt.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: That's 24 times, if you probably are listening on the radio. The lashing out coming as we know the President has been fuming. A source close to the White House telling CNN now it's getting closer and closer to his inner circle. How do you think he feels?

So back to this original point from Rudy Giuliani about bad faith, when it comes to bad faith, the big question is whether Trump's willingness to talk to Mueller seems to be a fabrication or an act. In fact, today he said he's willing to meet with, quote, anybody. He's already sat down with Putin and Kim Jong-un and now it's the Iranian President Rouhani. And Trump says he's ready to do so with no preconditions.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: I'll meet with anybody. I believe in meeting. You meet. There's nothing wrong with meeting.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you have preconditions for that meeting?

TRUMP: No preconditions. No. They want to meet, I'll meet. Any time they want. Any time they want.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Any time they want, no preconditions. If his standards for meeting dictators accused of murdering their own people is the same as his standard for Bob Mueller, he would have talked to Mueller months and months and months ago.

Jeff Zeleny is OutFront live at the White House. And Jeff, the President avoiding all questions about Mueller today.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: He was indeed, Erin. I mean, really throughout the day we saw the President several times, the first time in the Oval Office with the Italian Prime Minister asked questions about what is he talking about exactly with conflicts of interest with Bob Mueller. He did not answer questions there.

[19:05:05] He did not answer our questions in the east room later on after that news conference and he didn't answer questions later on again in the Oval Office. He clearly does not want to talk about publicly on camera about Bob Mueller. Erin, that does not mean he is not thinking about him and tweeting

about him.

There is one thing that's clear, it is -- it's clear that Bob Mueller is in his head as this trial of Paul Manafort perhaps begins tomorrow, that may be the reason. There may be other reasons, but it's clear that the President wants to talk about this in a controlled environment of saying things online. Does not want to be asked about it. But this anger and rage, Erin, is more strategy than anger. He clearly is trying to discredit the entire investigation as the trial begins.

But today he did not answer questions. We're almost a week now into the whole Michael Cohen episode, where the President has not once said what he believes or feels about his former protector and fixer essentially betraying him, Erin.

BURNETT: All right, thank you very much, Jeff Zeleny. And I think we can all say there's one thing that everybody can agree on, Bob Mueller is on Trump's mind.

OutFront now, Democratic Congressman Ted Lieu of California. He's a former Prosecutor, also a member of the House Judiciary Committee. Congressman, I appreciate your time. Great to have you. Rudy Giuliani, you heard him. Team Trump hasn't heard back from the Special Counsel in more than a week, he said, what, 10 days? He said it's bad faith. Why do you think it's been 10 days?

REP. TED LIEU (D), JUDICIARY COMMITTEE: Thank you, Erin, for your question. Let me first say that no one is above the law. And that's what Watergate taught us. And as a former prosecutor, defendants don't get to set preconditions. So the President shouldn't be setting any preconditions. He should going through that interview the same way other defendants or subjects go through interviews with prosecutors. So if there is any bad faith, it would be on the part of the President and his White House Counsel.

BURNETT: So, to this point though about 10 days and what that means, I mean, is that bad faith from Mueller? I mean, as we know it had sort of been every couple of days there was a new intrigue in the saga of the back and forth on the preconditions and Mueller's response. Do you agree that Mueller is engaging in bad faith or giving up? Or do you see anything sinister in this?

LIEU: I think the preconditions that we've heard of reported to the public are so extreme that no reasonable prosecutor would ever agree to them. Then may be one reason they're not responding. But also Rudy Giuliani just makes stuff up. So we need to hear also from the Department of Justice as to what these preconditions may or may not be.

And in terms of the interview, if the President, as reported on your show, is going to have no preconditions sitting down with the Iranian President, then he certainly should have no preconditions with Robert Mueller.

BURNETT: I mean, certainly that obviously was the point we were making. I mean, look, the President's attacks against Mueller and the investigation. You know, you heard the numbers, Congressman, have become more frequent and much more personal, right? Now he's talking about this contentious business relationship, which, you know, he had never mentioned in those words before. 439 days of an investigation not withstanding. Why do you think these attacks are becoming so much more frequent now?

LIEU: It's not surprising that Donald Trump is increasing his attacks. The walls are closing in on him. We got the release of the Cohen tape and the potential that Michael Cohen's going to flip. We've got the Paul Manafort trial about to start and the President is lashing out. And I know that when defendants can't rely on the facts or the law, they're resort to attacking law enforcement. And that's what you're seeing Donald Trump doing, he's attacking law enforcement.

BURNETT: So the President is demanding now Mueller release those quote, unquote, conflicts of interest. The Justice Department, as you know, looked into the history of Mueller and Trump when this all started, finding no issue with Mueller's appointment. Obviously, we all knew about his long standing friendship with Jim Comey. We raised it on the first night he was even appointed. That was certainly no secret.

Do you know what the President is talking about, Congressman, though, when he says, quote, very nasty and contentious business relationship? Do you have any idea what that refers to?

LIEU: No, and it couldn't have been that nasty if Donald Trump considered Robert Mueller for the position of FBI Director in the first place. I also do want to note that the Department of Justice ethics experts cleared any conflicts of interest that Robert Mueller might have had in May of 2017. In addition, Robert Mueller's Supervisor, Republican Rod Rosenstein, testified before Congress, saying there were no disqualifying conflicts of interest.

So the President right now is really just grasping at straws. And I think he's trying to distract the American public. He doesn't want to talk about the fact that health care costs are rising and that wages are, in fact, decreasing.

BURNETT: Your Republican colleagues on the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman Lieu, obviously you're a member of that, they want to bring back Jim Comey, the former FBI Director, for an interview. The topic reportedly about his decision-making during the 2016 campaign. Obviously, he's testified before you all. You asked him a lot of questions. What more do they want to know from him? Do you know?

LIEU: You know, there's a lot of issues that are very pressing such as lots of kids who were ripped away from their parents who have not been reunited yet. And the House Judiciary Committee controlled by Republicans wants to talk about Hillary Clinton's e-mails. I frankly think that is absurd.

[19:10:10] I do, however, welcome them bringing Comey back to testify. I think he is a very good witness. And I think he actually provides a lot of information that is not part of the Republican narrative. So, if they want to do that, then they should go ahead and do that, but I think the American people want to move on and talking about other issues.

BURNETT: But you're all for it. If they're going to do it, you're not going to try to stop it.

LIEU: I would welcome Comey testifying under oath in front of the House Judiciary Committee and telling the American people again his story of how Trump tried to obstruct justice.

BURNETT: Thank you very much, Congressman Lieu.

LIEU: Thank you, Erin.

BURNETT: And OutFront now, Rudy Giuliani's bizarre defense strategy today got even stranger.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIULIANI: I don't even know if that's a crime, colluding about Russians.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Does that do more harm than good? And breaking news at this hour, Bob Woodward, the legendary reporter, you know, the guy from deep throat who had the hand in taking down Nixon, has a new book coming out about Trump. We have some stunning details tonight.

Plus Trump talking tough on border security, threatening a government shutdown over the wall. But what's really going on with all those National Guard troops? Remember, they all got sent to the border. Well, we went to find out.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People might have thought they'd be patrolling right along this fence line here. That's not happening. That's not the way it was meant to happen.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No, nothing at all.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BURNETT: New tonight, did Rudy Giuliani, President Trump's own lawyer, admit there was collusion with Russia? That's kind of a crazy thing to even ask, right? But one must ask it when Giuliani said this not once but twice today, and saying, oh, collusion isn't a crime.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

[19:15:18] GIULIANI: I don't even know if that's a crime, colluding about Russians.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK.

GIULIANI: You start analyzing the crime, the hacking is the crime. The hacking is the crime.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That certainly is the original crime.

GIULIANI: Well the President didn't hack. I've been sitting here looking in the federal code trying to find collusion as a crime.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not.

GIULIANI: Collusion is not a crime.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: And this is significant because it's actually kind of not the point. The point is Rudy Giuliani never denied collusion took place. He just said collusion isn't a crime. And collusion itself, forget the crime part, colluding is something President Trump has repeatedly denied.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TRUMP: There is no collusion. I say it all the time. There is absolutely no collusion. There was no collusion on my side. There is no collusion between me and my campaign and the Russians.

I didn't know the President. There was nobody to collude with. I am truly not involved in any form of collusion with Russia, believe me.

BURNETT: Four hours later, I mean, you know, when you listen to all that, you realize there's kind of a problem here. Giuliani went to Fox News, called in to try to clean it up.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

GIULIANI: When I said today that there was no collusion and therefore -- and that collusion also is no crime. I've been saying that from the very beginning, so did John Dowd. It's a very, very familiar lawyer's argument that in the alternative, my client didn't do it, and even if he did it, it's not a crime. And I have said that over and over again.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: OutFront now, Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto, White House Correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks, April Ryan and Bob Mueller's Former Special Assistant at the Justice Department, Michael Zeldin.

OK, Jim, the President, you know, every time he's asked anything says there was no collusion, right? You could ask him about whether, I don't know whether the sky is blue and he's going to say, yes, sure, but there was no collusion with Russia, right? Then Rudy Giuliani comes out and says something really different, you know, saying well, you know, but I don't know if it's a crime, you know? There is --

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Yes.

BURNETT: -- you know, what do you make of this? What kind of explanation is this? This is like saying, I didn't steal it, oh, but if I did, what are you going to do?

SCIUTTO: Yes. I mean, first of all, it's a legal red herring because the crime would be conspiracy, and a conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government which we've seen this Justice Department, we've seen this Special Counsel charge several Russians with in a group of indictments earlier this year. Russians who were directly involved in trying to influence the U.S. election. As we know, that old story, stealing information, timing those releases, et cetera. That's actually the criminal charge there.

I think that beyond that, I mean, Rudy Giuliani's a smart lawyer, he's been around a long time, he knows that that is a crime and I'm sure he's read those indictments. But beyond that, what is he trying to accomplish there? It's not the first time I have heard that kind of pre-preemptive argument from Trump loyalists where they say -- and President Trump himself, you'll remember, when the Trump Tower meeting was first revealed a year ago raised this trial balloon saying, listen, anybody would get opposition research against their opponent, regardless of the source. That, frankly, doesn't stand up to the facts because there are laws against accepting material support from foreigners, which is what this would amount to.

So, you know, it's hard to say what Rudy Giuliani's trying to accomplish here, but I just try to stick to what the facts are on the law from hearing from smart lawyers. And they say forget about collusion, talk about conspiracy --

BURNETT: And --

SCIUTTO: -- and that is illegal.

BURNETT: And conspiracy is illegal. And yet -- Michael, what do you think the strategy is here from Rudy Giuliani, right? He's saying collusion is not a crime. Well if you didn't do it, you shouldn't care whether it's a crime. So, it does appear that he is opening the door here.

MICHAEL ZELDIN, ROBERT MUELLER'S FMR. SPECIAL ASSISTANT, DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE: Inadvertently, I think. I think the only thing that I credit that came out of Rudy Giuliani's mouth since he's appeared on the scene is that he's not up to speed. Remember when he said he wasn't up to speed on the facts and the law, I think he's still not up to speed on the facts and the law.

What he has said here today, of course makes no sense legally, as Jim pointed out, it is a crime to coordinate with foreign nationals and receive a thing of value as a donation. It is a conspiracy to defraud the United States. If you engage in that sort of conduct, it is a lie to make a false declaration of it. So, there is no strategic value here that I can see other than Rudy Giuliani is confused and is confusing the matter for his client, which makes it worse for his client because the story continues to linger. I don't credit him. Others may think he's, you know, crazy as a fox and has a strategy here. I think he's freelancing and he's making mistakes and it's hurting his client.

BURNETT: Well, April, you know, speaking of confusing things and muddying the water in ways that is, I mean, they really been far from helpful for the President, Giuliani today introduced for the first time a new meeting.

[19:20:14] Entirely separate meeting from the one we all know about, right? The one with the Russian lawyer and Donald Trump Jr. and Manafort and Kushner, et cetera. He is introducing a whole new meeting before that Russian meeting took place, OK? Here is what he said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIULIANI: Cohen also now says, that he says too much, that two days before he participated in a meeting with roughly the same group of people but not the President, definitely not the President, in which they were talking about the strategy of the meeting with the Russians. The people in that meeting deny it. The people we've been able to interview.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Again, April, the confusion here is that he's saying the people in that meeting deny it. Denied what? Denied that's what it was talking about but admit there was a meeting in which case Rudy Giuliani is saying there was a meeting and you're opening the door to -- I mean, what the heck is going on here?

APRIL RYAN, W.H. CORRESPONDENT, AMERICAN URBAN RADIO NETWORKS: You're right. There are several things it seems like to be going on. Number one, lawyers are supposed to keep their mouths shut and so is the client. And Rudy Giuliani is talking too much. He could be opening up a hole and jumping right in.

And it could also be a strategy. You know, he wants to play this out in the court of public opinion to have the shiny ball to divert the attention from something else. We just don't know. Rudy Giuliani is an anomaly at this moment for a lot of people, but the bottom line is he's either doing harm to this President's case by announcing something that people don't know or he could be sly as a fox trying to really put something out there. We just don't know. We have to wait and see.

This strategy playing in the court of public opinion is really playing to the base, though --

BURNETT: Yes.

RYAN: -- who is supporting the President, his base, by 91 percent.

BURNETT: And which is stunning. And I think important to keep raising, right? But he does have that incredible support from his base. It has not relented at all.

You know, Michael, Rudy Giuliani, you know, kept up attacking Michael Cohen himself today, you know, after -- this is just what he said, though, to give everyone a sense of the confusion which is now Rudy Giuliani.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GIULIANI: The guy is unethical, he's a scumbag, he's a horrible person. The man is an honest, honorable lawyer. And the man is a pathological manipulator, liar.

Michael's not going to lie. He's going to tell the truth.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: OK, I'm sorry, I had whiplash. That obviously is extremely confusing. And, by the way, if that confusion, Michael, which caused the President's former lawyer Jay Goldberg to tell me that what Rudy is doing there is going to do immeasurable damage to his boss, the President of the United States. Here he is.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JAY GOLDBERG, PERSONAL FRIEND & LONG-TIME ATTORNEY FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP: For Giuliani to say that he'll tell the truth strips the defense of its main weapon, of claiming that he's coloring his testimony to favor the government so that he can get a letter of cooperation. I knew as soon as Giuliani spoke that he was damaging Trump's case immeasurably.

BURNETT: Immeasurably?

GOLDBERG: Immeasurably.

BURNETT: How bad could that be?

GOLDBERG: It ranks near 100 in terms of damage.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BURNETT: Near 100, Michael?

ZELDIN: Well, I think he's right that Giuliani should have kept his mouth shut. It doesn't help his client when he says, on the one hand this guy is honorable, on the other hand when he says something bad about us, he's not. He should stick to the silence is golden rule and let the real lawyers on this case, the Raskins and Emmet Flood do the legal working.

BURNETT: Jim, I must ask you about some breaking news. The Washington Post just reporting something extremely significant for this President. That is that U.S. spy agencies are saying there are signs of new missiles being worked on, one, possibly two intercontinental ballistic missiles at the same factory that produced the ICBM capable of striking the American East Coast. Intelligence source tells them this is -- we see them going to work just as before. The President, of course, says North Korea is no longer a nuclear threat. How significant is this development?

SCIUTTO: If true, it's part of a series of similar signals, right? Because there had been activity detected at nuclear facilities within the last month or so continuing. Beyond that, there's been no irreversible progress. Remember, that's one of the standards that this administration held up --

BURNETT: Yes.

SCIUTTO: -- in other areas. Yes, they have stopped missile tests and nuclear tests. That could change tomorrow. And, yes, they appear to have taken down one of the underground test sites. They appear to have begun dismantling their missile test sites, but both of those things are easily replaceable --

BURNETT: Yes.

SCIUTTO: -- and U.S. intelligence had not established what they had actually done to disable those sites. So you have a lack of progress on one side and then here you have indications that North Korea's continuing activities that they were supposed to have stopped. Not a good sign for progress in these nuclear negotiations.

BURNETT: No. And certainly not a good sign when things like this leak. Because I think we have to make the point to people watching that it leaks because people in the intelligence community want this out. Because they think it's important for the world to know and obviously it does directly contradict --

[19:25:13] RYAN: Whistle blowing.

BURNETT: -- the view of their boss.

RYAN: Yes.

BURNETT: Thank you all.

And next, breaking news, the legendary Bob Woodward now taking on Donald Trump. Firsthand accounts and diary entries apparently in his possession. Some of the President's own hand written notes as well.

And a former Trump organization executive says he knew that any time he spoke with Trump someone else was listening. He was worried about bugs. Jack O'Donnell is OutFront.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BURNETT: Breaking news. Legendary reporter Bob Woodward of Watergate fame is taking on President Trump. He's got a book coming out. It's called "Fear" to tell us the behind the scenes story of what's happening in the Trump White House. It's based on hundreds of hours of taped interviews with firsthand sources. It's coming out just weeks before the midterm elections.

OutFront now, our Special Correspondent Jamie Gangel who has the details on Woodward's new book, Joan Walsh, National Affairs Correspondent at The Nation and Amy Kremer, Co-Founder and Chairman of Women for Trump. So Jamie, let me start with you. What are you learning about this book? I mean, we all know Bob Woodward, when you hear that, you know, you think of "Deep Throat" (ph), you think of Nixon. What's this going to be?

JAMIE GANGEL, CNN SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT: I don't think Donald Trump is going to be happy. The first words that are used to describe this book are that it is going to reveal in unprecedented detail the harrowing life inside President Trump's White House. It has explosive discussions and debates. But here is the thing, Bob Woodward went back to his Watergate days.

About eight months ago he went dark. He went knocking on doors of sources and he has hundreds of hours of recordings. Everybody agreed to be recorded, of firsthand White House sources and people in the room.

ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: So, this is not the Michael Wolff unnamed sources?

GANGEL: No. BURNETT: This is on the record?

GANGEL: This is meticulously detailed fact-checking. And it takes you right in the room, Oval Office, Situation Room, Air Force One, White House residence, and I'm told Donald Trump is extensively quoted in it.

BURNETT: Extensively quoted, which is pretty -- OK. So, how did he get that access? The president didn't talk to him. So --

(CROSSTALK)

GANGEL: He also got in addition to all of these interviews with firsthand sources in the room, he got what Bob Woodward always gets, he got documents. He has memos, he has files, he has personal diaries, he has notes, and I'm told he has notes written in Donald Trump's hand.

BURNETT: In Sharpie. I'm just joking when I say that but it could be, obviously.

Amy, what do you make about this? This is not a Michael Wolff thing you can blow off and say, you know, it's salacious gossip. It's not documented. I mean, this is going to be fact checked. This is going to be on the record.

AMY KREMER, CO-FOUNDER & CO-CHAIR, WOMEN FOR TRUMP: Erin, I would say I'm not surprise. I would actually be surprised if it was a book in a positive light. I mean, I wouldn't expect anything different, but we'll have to wait and see when it comes out.

Look, Donald Trump was not elected because, you know, he's this great orator or he's politically correct. He was elected to shake Washington up and that's exactly what he's done. And to say that, you know, he's quoted in it and he says these things, he talks to the press more than anybody. He's on Twitter, he's out there every time he goes to Air Force One.

So, it's not like he's not talking. He is absolutely out there speaking his mind.

BURNETT: So, let me ask you, Joan, when Jamie uses the word harrowing.

JOAN WALSH, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yes.

BURNETT: What do you interpret from that? Because, you know, Bob Woodward, as we know, he's going to do a meticulous job, but he hasn't always been a critic of this president. The dossier, I mean, the president complimented him on Twitter.

WALSH: Right.

BURNETT: Because Woodward said, the dossier, quote, he said this I believe with Joe and Mika, that is a garbage document. It never should have been presented as part of an intelligence briefing. WALSH: Right, I remember when he said that.

BURNETT: I mean, the president -- the president's got to love him for that.

WALSH: Right. So, we don't know exactly what's coming. But I take the word "harrowing" to mean that it's hard to work in the White House, which we know. I also think that he has incredible sources and he has access.

This White House has more turnover than any White House in history. So, he also has access to a lot of people who have left. So people in the White House may say one thing. We know this White House, even within the White House, leaks like a sieve.

So, he's, you know, he's been in D.C. for going on 50 years, I mean, he's got the sourcing to really tell the story.

BURNETT: Does it have anything on Russia?

GANGEL: Yes, it does. So I'm told that we're going to hear about national security, China, North Korea, Middle East and Russia. I am told there is new information about the Russia investigation. And also domestic policy, things like Charlottesville, what was going on behind the scenes.

BURNETT: I mean, Amy, do you think this is something that could move the needle for this president? You know, we talk about how popular he is with his base, but is this something, given how meticulously reported and fact checked it will be, that could actually move the needle, unlike, say, Michael Wolff, which was unsubstantiated.

KREMER: Listen, I don't think so, Erin, but I could be totally wrong. I think that Donald Trump, he is following through on his promises, promises made, promises kept. And when the economy is booming, he's talking about securing the border, he's trying to deal with North Korea and Russia and focused on foreign policy.

That's what people elected him to do. And his base is pretty happy with what he's doing.

BURNETT: Amy, I mean, I'm sorry, Joan, let me ask you this. This all comes, Amy was saying he talks so much to the press.

WALSH: Right.

BURNETT: And, you know, on some levels he does. When he wants to you can't get him away from a camera.

WALSH: Right.

BURNETT: He doesn't like to hold press conferences, but he does answer impromptu questions quite a bit.

WALSH: Right. BURNETT: Lately, not so much, okay, with Michael Cohen. Today,

again, refusing to answer questions about Mueller and Cohen at one of those walks to or from the helicopter.

WALSH: Right. Right.

BURNETT: But he did take a swing at the media today again. Here he is with the prime minister of Italy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I had a great meeting, in my opinion, of course the fake news didn't cover it that way, but I had a great meeting with President Putin of Russia.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Fake news? It never stops.

WALSH: Well, Erin, how do we cover his meeting with Russia when we don't know what happened inside it?

[19:35:03] His own staff may not even know.

BURNETT: We cover what he said, oh, that's right, at the joint press conference when he said how wonderful Putin was.

WALSH: Right. We've covered what people were horrified by, including DNI Dan Coats. So we did cover it but we can't praise him for what went on within the meeting because we do not know.

GANGEL: And I would say this about the book, we are seeing what Donald Trump sounds like behind closed doors. From people who were in those meetings. That's going to be very different from a press conference, and if I had to guess, tomorrow morning he's going to be tweeting about this.

BURNETT: What do you have to say about that, Amy? Do you think he'll come out against Bob Woodward quickly or he's going to wait?

KREMER: He'll probably wait. I mean, I don't know why he would come out. He -- we don't know what's in it. We haven't seen it yet. So, I mean, until we see it and read it, I wouldn't say anything.

BURNETT: All right. That's you.

(LAUGHTER)

WALSH: You have discipline.

BURNETT: Thank you, all three. I appreciate it.

And next, Michael Cohen under attack for recording his conversations with Trump. My next guest worked for Trump, right? He had an office in the building and he said it was an open secret, that Trump did that all the time. You're going to hear the stories. And Trump doubling down on his threat to shut down the government over

his wall. Meanwhile, remember those National Guard troops that he was summoning from all over the country in an emergency to guard the border? Well, guess what? They're not.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None of our soldiers or airmen currently on Operation Guardian Support are armed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:40:12] BURNETT: New tonight, Rudy Giuliani slamming Michael Cohen for taping conversations with Trump and others, claiming it's evidence that Cohen is an unethical person who lacks character.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RUDY GIULIANI, ATTORNEY FOR PRESIDENT TRUMP: I've practiced law for a long time. If you tape-record your client and you lie to your client about it, you have no character. You forfeited your character. You forfeited your law license, as far as I'm concerned.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: OUTFRONT now, former vice president of Trump Plaza Casino in Atlantic City, Jack O'Donnell.

And, Jack, I appreciate your time tonight.

OK. So, you have a view on this that very few people do. You've been there. You say taping conversations without permission was business as usual for Trump and his team, right?

JACK O'DONNELL, FORMER VICE PRESDIENT OF TRUMP PLAZA CASINO, ATLANTIC CITY: Absolutely. I think it was very well known, even going back to the John Baron tapes, which we all heard, so we knew he tape recorded his own conversations.

BURNETT: That's when he pretended to be John Baron, calling "The New York Post," just so people know, with gossip. Sorry, continue your point.

O'DONNELL: Correct. Well, just before I became the president and chief operating officer of the organization, my boss at the time, Steve Hyde, came to me and said, hey, you have a lot of conversations with Donald. You're going to be on the phone a lot. Just be aware that somebody is always going to be listening.

It might be recorded and it might just be somebody else in the office listening in on the conversations. But I was very aware that your conversations were being heard by more than just Donald Trump when you spoke to him. BURNETT: I mean, it's pretty incredible. You actually have talked

about Jack. You told us when you were getting ready for this interview that you swept your office for bugs more than once in a single year because you were so concerned.

O'DONNELL: I did. You know, there was a lot going on in the business and I became suspicious early on when I moved into the president's office. I did ask our security people to sweet the office. Then it did become a regular thing, like every six months I had, you know, somebody go through the office, one of our surveillance people, just to make sure.

We weren't doing anything wrong but, you know, the red flags went off a couple of times when I was on calls. And some, you know, with Donald, some without him.

BURNETT: What do you mean red flags?

O'DONNELL: That I thought it was necessary.

Well, you know, listen, I'm not a technical guy and I think it would be a bad recording if somebody -- if you could hear sounds, but, you know, the clicks of things going on and off at certain times in conversations, that mostly led me to believe that it was something in New York. But I just wanted to make sure there wasn't something in my office as well.

BURNETT: So, why do you think Trump did this? I mean, you know, he's the one, right, that you believe was driving this? I just want to be clear, you think this came from the top and this is how he, Donald Trump, did business?

O'DONNELL: Yes, I think it was business as usual for him. Quite frankly, Erin, part of it was from an administrative standpoint that somebody would listen in. At the time, his administrative assistant, Norma Foerderer, I think she listened to a lot of conversations and I think that was just to keep Donald in line.

But further, I've been in the room with him when he's had other people sitting in there and he puts you -- and you don't -- he doesn't identify that there's other people listening in on the conversation.

BURNETT: Yes.

O'DONNELL: So he has a voyeur piece to him, you know, he does quite frequently.

BURNETT: It's interesting when you see a voyeur piece. Different types of calls, obviously, but in the room in his office as well. And I would have to agree with you, he never identifies who is on the call, which would -- one would think from a business perspective would certainly not be normal protocol in a professional setting.

So I want to play for you, Jack, part of the tape since you've dealt with the president so much that Michael Cohen released, right? So, this is Cohen talking to Trump about paying the playmate. Paying for the playmate story of her alleged affair with Trump. Here is the clip.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

MICHAEL COHEN, FORMER TRUMP ATTORNEY: I spoke to Allen about it. When it comes time to the financing which will be --

DONALD TRUMP, THEN-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Wait a second. What financing?

COHEN: We'll have to pay something.

TRUMP: And we'll pay with cash.

COHEN: No, no, no, no, no. I've got -- no, no, no.

TRUMP: Check.

COHEN: Hey, Don, how are you?

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: So, Jack, Cohen's lawyer says Trump is saying, pay cash, which basically would imply a lot of shady things. Giuliani, Trump's lawyer, says Trump is saying pay by check, others say Trump is just okaying the cash and saying check, as in check off an item on his to- do list.

As someone who has been in these rooms, who's heard the president, has heard the words he uses, what do you hear?

O'DONNELL: Well, I heard something different. And I did listen to the tape several times. What I heard and the way I interpreted the word "check" was an affirmation, is this is how I want it done. Which is -- I'm surprised nobody else has brought this up because it is the way Trump --

BURNETT: So you mean an affirmation of paying by cash? I want to make sure I understand.

[19:45:01] O'DONNELL: An affirmation of paying with cash, because that is how Trump would speak. He would say cash, check, as in you get it, correct? And so, that's how I interpret it.

Now, look, I could be wrong but it sounded feasible to me that that's what he was saying.

BURNETT: Well, I mean, look, in some of these cases when you can't exactly understand, what you need is people who someone to know their particular verbal ticks and what they do and what they say. So, certainly, your opinion more informed than most who are listening to this.

Jack, I appreciate your time and thank you so much.

O'DONNELL: Thank you, Erin.

BURNETT: And next, Trump ordered thousands of troops to guard the U.S.-Mexico border.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We're going to be guarding our border with the military. That's a big step.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Except for it's not what they're doing. We have a special investigative report next.

And Rudy Giuliani tweeted this: You. Just you.

Who is it?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BURNETT: Tonight, President Trump doubling down on his threat to shut down the government if there is no deal on the wall.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: If we don't get border security, after many, many years of talk within the United States, I would have no problem doing a shutdown.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[19:50:08] BURNETT: One border security measure, of course, that the president has touted, you may recall, is sending national guard troops to the border. But what they're actually doing there might not be what he said they'd be doing there.

Martin Savidge is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Maybe you were expecting to see military trucks and troops on the border. They're not here. Instead of human traffickers or drug smugglers, Sergeant Francisco Robles (ph) is tracking down a pickup truck's electrical problem. He is a mechanic in the border motor pool in Nogales.

Specialist Geraldo Duran is at the border. But instead of a rifle, he's got a welding torch.

Some National Guard troops have even served by cleaning the stalls at Border Patrol stables.

Operation Guardian Support is a long way from the president's tough talk of military might.

TRUMP: Until we can have a wall and proper security, we're going to be guarding our border with the military.

SAVIDGE (on camera): You're not armed, correct? SGT. ADRIAN BORUNDA, ARIZONA NATIONAL GUARD, PUBLIC AFFAIRS: Correct.

None of our soldier or airmen currently on Operation Guardian Support are armed.

SAVIDGE: And they're not out there walk right beside the Border Patrol agents?

BORUNDA: Correct. These are positions that are back off the border.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Despite President Trump's claim we haven't really used troops on the border before, we have. In 2006, the Bush administration sent 6,000 soldiers to the border. In 2010, President Obama sent 1,200, but they were in full gear and armed.

When Specialist Duran's welding at the border, he needs two border agents to protect him since he is not allowed to carry his gun.

(on camera): It is possible the public has the wrong impression of what this mission was about?

BORUNDA: It's a support role. And they may have ideas about prior missions. It's not that anymore.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): Yet --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Clear.

SAVIDGE: -- despite their diminished role, National Guard troops are making a difference.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good to go.

SAVIDGE: Thanks to Sergeant Robles, the U.S. border patrol has more vehicles on patrol.

And thanks to senior airman Adriana McGyver (ph), border patrol agents on horses closing in on three suspects have an extra pair of eyes watching their back as she and other guard members monitor dozens of remote cameras. For many guard members, this is their first time to really get a sense of what's going on at the border, the good and the bad.

And do you see it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, sir.

SAVIDGE: You do?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.

SAVIDGE: Is it busy?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, extremely.

SAVIDGE (voice-over): So far, according to the U.S. Border Patrol, the National Guard has facilitated more than 1,200 arrests and the seizure of more than 1,300 pounds of marijuana, along the Arizona border alone.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're looking at Nogales, Arizona, and Nogales, Sonora.

SAVIDGE: Sitting beside border agents Stephanie Dixon, looking out from her lonely perch on the border, there is not a single soldier in sight.

(on camera): People might have thought they'd be patrolling right along the fence line. They have rifles slung over their shoulder and they would be riding along with you. That's not happening. That's not the way it was meant to happen.

STEPHANIE DIXON, U.S. BORDER PATROL AGENT: No, not at all. They're helping out the overall mission, and they're putting more of us out here on the border to secure the border.

SAVIDGE: Border agent Dixon may not see the soldiers, but she's glad they're here. Somewhere.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE: Erin, it's the states that provide the troops for Operation Guardian Support, but its federal government that provides the money.

And right now, OGS as they call it is funded through the end of September. After that, the future is unclear -- Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Marty, thank you very much. A fascinating piece on what they're doing and accomplishing, and obviously, as you saw, not armed. A big change from the Obama years.

OUTFRONT next, Jeanne Moos on Rudy Giuliani's mysterious tweet, which has gone viral.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:57:58] BURNETT: Here is Jeanne Moos.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For a guy who's been talking a lot, it was the tiniest of tweets. One little lonely word posted early in the morning. You. You what, wondered Twitter.

Twitter decided to finish Rudy's tweet for him.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: The good news for Rudy is that many songs beginning with you tend to be adoring.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: Though there was the occasional downer.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: Responded someone else, he could never be a natural woman, referring to the time then Mayor Giuliani --

TRUMP: You're really beautiful.

MOOS: Dressed in drag for a charity dinner and got nuzzled by the man he now represents.

GIULIANI: Oh, you dirty boy, you, oh, ooh.

MOOS: While most finished Rudy's tweets, Kellyanne Conway's husband filled in the blanks before the you.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: And if song lyrics don't do it for you, how about movie lines.

Someone recruited a few good men to complete Rudy's thought.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can't handle the truth!

MOOS: But Rudy sure has been handling lies, accusing Michael Cohen.

GIULIANI: He is a bad liar.

MOOS: Someone completed Rudy's you with a song played at Trump rallies.

(SINGING)

MOOS: Sort of reminds us of the time President Trump posted that just after midnight head scratcher.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Covfefe. Huh?

MOOS: Only Rudy says an actual word. Maybe he was about to tweet, you have the right to remain silent. So far, Rudy has remained silent about the inexplicable.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You!

MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: -- New York.

(MUSIC)

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BURNETT: Best part was that skit with Rudy and Trump.

Thanks for joining us.

Anderson starts now.