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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT

New Tape Reveals Lara Trump Offering A Just-Fired Omarosa A Job; Retired Navy Admiral To Trump: "Revoke My Security Clearance" Too; GOP Defends Trump, Blame Brennan For Losing Security Clearance. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired August 16, 2018 - 19:00   ET

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


[19:00:12] ERIN BURNETT, OUTFRONT HOST: Out front next, caught on tape. Trump's daughter-in-law on a new recording offering Omarosa a job. A job paid for by small dollar Trump donors. Was Lara Trump trying to pay Omarosa off with other people's money?

Plus the admiral who come in at the raid to kill bin Laden comes out swaying Trump, dating the President to revoke his security clearance. And remembering Aretha Franklin, the "Soul Man" Sam Moore and TV legend Larry King, let's go out front.

And good evening, I'm Erin Burnett. Out front tonight, President Trump's family offering to spend other people's money, possibly to save Trump himself. Omarosa Manigault-Newman releasing a new tape today. This time, a secret recording of Lara Trump, that's the President's daughter-in-law.

And on the tape, she offers Omarosa $180,000 a year job with the Trump campaign. Paid for by small donors. This offer coming after Omarosa was fired from her White House job.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

LARA TRUMP, TRUMP'S DAUGHTER-IN-LAW: The only thing that we have to consider, where we're talking salary as far as the campaign is concerned is that, as you know, everything is public. And all the money that we raise and that pays salaries is directly from donors, small-dollar donors for the most part. So I know you were making 179 at the White House.

And I think we can work something out where we keep you right along those lines. Specifically, let me see, I haven't even added up the numbers. But we were talking about like 15k a month. Let me see what that adds up to. Times 12, yes.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: OK. Think about that. $180,000 a year salary, right? You heard her lay out the numbers. $15,000 times 12, that's what you get. Paid for by, quote, small-dollar donors for the most part.

Let's be clear. Small-dollar donors were central to Donald Trump's success in 2016. And he knew it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We've had tremendous support. But where we have had the best support in all fairness is the small donor. The $61, I think it averages something like $61. We've had tremendous success with the small donors, $61 a head.

We have a lot of small donors. $61 I think average. We also have a lot of wonderful people in terms of small donations. And that's coming in fantastically.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: The Trump family has billions of dollars but they were not offering to spend their own money. They chose, instead, to offer a questionable job using the money of thousands of his supporters. You do the math. $180,000 divided by 61. You get the math.

Many of these donors could only dream of making what Omarosa was being offered. So let's lay it out. Lara Trump's offered Omarosa of $180,000 a year comes to about four times what the average American earns a year. This is according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. So what would Omarosa do to earn this hefty salary? Well, Lara Trump gave a job description.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

L. TRUMP: In terms of your position, specifically, I really feel like your position would require, you know, you to be able to be flexible in terms of where you are. Sometimes, you know, come to New York for occasional meetings. But I would love if you could, you know, occasionally go do speaking engagements and that sort of thing for us. I think you'd be awesome doing that.

So it doesn't really matter where you are. If you're comfortable staying in D.C., then, you know, you're -- we're more than happy to have you.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: $180,000 in small donor money for, quote, occasional meetings and, quote, occasional speaking engagements. Sounds absurd? Sure. And Lara Trump knew it. She also made it clear that she knew Omarosa had, quote, some things in her back pocket and she told her, you know, you have to just say good things about the President.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

L. TRUMP: It sounds a little like, obviously, that there are some things you've got in the back pocket to pull out. Clearly, if you come on board the campaign, like, we can't have, we got to --

OMAROSA MANIGAULT NEWMAN, FORMER WHITE HOUSE AIDE: Oh god no.

L. TRUMP: Everything -- everybody, positive, right? (END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: Everything positive. So to summarize, Lara Trump offers Omarosa $180,000 of other people's money, small donors. In what appears to be an effort to keep Omarosa quiet and just saying good things about Donald Trump. But it gets even better than that.

Tonight, Lara Trump is pushing back in a statement saying, "Omarosa was welcomed into our family as a trusted friend and confidant. When Omarosa was fired by the White House Chief of Staff in December 2017, my entire family was concerned for her because we had no idea about the basis of her dismissal. We still wanted her on the team because we cared so much about her personally. That's why I reached out to offer her a position".

[19:05:04] The operative line here is my entire family had no idea about the basis for her dismissal. This claim simply does not add up. This job offer, as we understand it, came four days after Omarosa was fired by Chief of Staff John Kelly and Omarosa recorded that, too, so you can hear why she was fired.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

JOHN KELLY, WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: It's come to my attention, over the last few months, that there's been some pretty, in my opinion, significant integrity issues related to you and use of government vehicles and some other issues.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

BURNETT: That's serious. That's lying and cheating and using taxpayer money for things you shouldn't be. So Lara Trump is saying she knew Omarosa who was welcomed into the family as a trusted friend and confidant was fired, but she didn't know why and did not bother to find out? This does not pass the basic smell test. It seems pretty clear the Trump family was willing that appears to pay off Omarosa for her silence as long as other people, small Trump donors, $61 a piece on average, paid for it.

Jeff Zeleny is out front live at the White House. And Jeff, Omarosa is clearly getting under the President's skin.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well Erin, there's no question. I mean, Omarosa in many respects as we see this playing out is largely playing a Trump game. She largely is -- she's dribbling out these recordings bit by bit in some cases hour by hour. You think the subject was changed to John Brennan, the security clearances. Omarosa takes it back. So there's no question, we are told, talking to people here at the White House. The President is agitated by this, embarrassed by it and angry about it.

Now the question is, was this really a payoff? We do know that at least in this White House, it's not that unusual for fired staffers to suddenly wind up on the payroll of the re-election campaign. That is a place where others have gone. Is Omarosa in that same position? It seems she's different. Because she was fired directly, and the President now we are told that he knew about it. He said at the time he wasn't.

So all of these certainly is going at the heart of something that he does not like people taking advantage of his name, using his name. So we're told behind the scenes he's furious about this. He has stopped talking about it. He would not answer questions about it today after an hour long Cabinet meeting. He's not been tweeting about it except to show positive praise that she has said about him. So they're trying to show her as an opportunist here, but so far at least she has the goods, and she has been releasing these tapes bit by bit and she promises even more, Erin.

BURNETT: All right, thank you very much Jeff Zeleny.

ZELENY: Sure.

BURNETT: Let's go to John Avlon, Senior Political Analyst, Kirsten Powers, USA Today Columnist, and Jack O'Donnell, former President and Chief Operating Officer of the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino. John, look, putting aside the absurdity of the claim here that, you know, we hired someone who was fired and no idea why they were fired and didn't bother to ask, I suppose, the President is obviously upset about this. Let's look at his tweet record.

JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes.

BURNETT: Didn't want to answer questions verbally today. But Omarosa's name is eight times in the past three days. You know, with a lot of time spent on the adjectives that go with them. Dog, low life, whatever it may be.

AVLON: Yes.

BURNETT: Putin has not been mentioned once on Twitter. North Korea has been mentioned once. So it's eight to one in favor of Omarosa versus Kim Jing-un. She has got to the President like few others.

AVLON: Yes. That's a lot of psychological real estate for the President of the United States. But, you know, Omarosa is playing the President's game against him. There's obviously personal betrayal. But it's not like this should come as a giant shock to anybody.

BURNETT: Yes.

AVLON: This is Chapter 751 of only the best people. They seem to just sort of attract people with integrity issues to use John Kelly's term. What I loved about the tape Lara Trump, as what you said, obviously there's some issues, things in your back pocket. Obviously. Well, like what? Do tell. Only things that they felt could be hushed up with a no-show job that would take the donations --

BURNETT: What do you mean occasional meetings, occasional speaking engagements for $180,000 a year. Pretty nice, right?

AVLON: Yes.

BURNETT: So a lot of small donors would have been happy to get that salary for that responsibility.

AVLON: You made the point. The multiple of the average annual income and this is thousands of those $61 donations. This is an auditorium full of patsies having their money be used to pay silence of a reality show TV star.

BURNETT: All right. As we said, nearly 3,000 of them using the average that you heard the President use multiple times.

Jack, Omarosa is now saying there's more tapes. And by the way, there were people a few days ago who said, well, any tape she have would have already been mentioned in the book. You know, she can't have more tapes. But you know what? This one is new. No one knew it was out there. And now here it is. And now she says there's more. Here she is.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

NEWMAN: There are things that I write about and then there are things that I'm going to save to share when the time is right.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: You're going to release more tapes?

NEWMAN: If I need to. I'll do what I have to do to protect myself.

LEMON: How are you going to determine whether you need to?

NEWMAN: Well, we'll see. He's threatening to get me arrested. He is trying to intimidate my publisher and trying to intimidate me. Donald Trump has met his match.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

[19:10:02] BURNETT: Jack, you know him well. Is he afraid? Has he met his match?

JACK O'DONNELL, PRESIDENT & CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, TRUMP PLAZA HOTEL & CASINO: Well, I think he is afraid. And this is what he does when he is most afraid. You know, he attacks, attacks and attacks. You know, whether he's met his match or not, that remains to be seen. His tactics are similar to what he used when he tried to stop my book. The letters come to the publisher, then they come to you directly trying to buy you off and then after that the threats begin.

So it looks like the same pattern is there for his behavior. But he might have met his match here. He trained her, and I think she's learned some lessons from him.

BURNETT: Well, I mean, and she certainly is dribbling them out. I mean, Kirsten, you know, that statement, I'm going to put it up on the screen again. But, obviously, the whole thing is, "My entire family was concerned for her because we had no idea about the basis for her dismissal". I said, it doesn't add up because it just simply doesn't, right?

If you want to entertain that it is possible though that what she's saying here is true, which is worse, offering to pay someone off for their silence at $15,000 a month or hiring someone using campaign donor money at $61 a piece on average without bothering to check why they were fired from working for your father-in-law. This conversation with Lara Trump happened four days after Omarosa was fired.

KIRSTEN POWERS, USA TODAY COLUMNIST: Yes. So, I have a slightly different view on this. For one thing, this isn't the whole tape, right? I mean, Omarosa says she hasn't released the whole tape.

BURNETT: Right.

POWERS: So if you just listen to what she's saying, she's actually not saying that she's buying her off. She's talking about you're going to have to travel sometimes to do these things. She's not actually -- we don't know. There could be a whole other conversation where she outlines what she's doing. We don't know that.

BURNETT: It could be. But what about the part where she said only positive things and all that?

POWERS: That is a completely normal thing to expect of a person who is coming to work for an organization, a campaign or a company. I mean, that's just -- you wouldn't say, oh, and by the way, you can come on and you can start --

BURNETT: What about the -- I know you have a lot of stuff in your back pocket?

POWERS: Yes, that would suggest that they know that she is potentially damaging. So what I'm saying is that I'm saying that it is not uncommon in the political world if -- for people to find jobs for people when they feel that they've been problematic and they don't want them out there freelancing. Now, to your other point about the money that's being used for it, I would say in any other situation, completely unethical.

I think it's a questionable thing here only because based on my experience with Trump voters, they don't really care. If somebody says we had to do this for the cause, right, because she was out of control and she was going to hurt Mr. Trump, and we had to do this, they might say, OK. You know --

BURNETT: That's an interesting point. That $61 donor, would they be OK with it?

AVLON: No, I think, that is a very good point because there is the, you know, surround Trump while he shoots someone in Fifth Avenue crowd and they may say, hey, this is great. I was paying for protection money in effect for my guy. The one thing I just create (ph) is that normally when people get hired on campaigns, it's assumed. They don't need to be told that they're not going to go running around and saying negative things about the candidate.

BURNETT: Yes. You don't have to put that out there. I mean, Jack, you, you know, mentioned you were offered hush money by team Trump. And to you there's no question that that's exactly what this offer was to Omarosa, right?

O'DONNELL: This is absolutely hush money in my opinion. And, quite frankly, Erin, it does come on the backs of the farmers in Iowa, in Wisconsin. People that put faith in him. And it's a pattern for him as well, by the way. Is that the small investor in his history has always taken it on the short end.

And in my opinion, the small donor in this case signed up for something and I don't think this is what they signed up for. I -- There is a radical segment of the Trump follower that doesn't care. But I think these new voters, these people in some of the rural communities that are hardworking people, I think they do care that their money is being used as hush money.

BURNETT: Jack, I mean, you know, it's interesting the person making this offer here is Lara Trump, the President's daughter-in-law, right? This isn't just a campaign official or a random advice, all right? This is a member of the family. You say Trump doesn't do, or his family doesn't do anything without Trump's direct approval.

O'DONNELL: Well, during my days, of course, there was only one other Trump in the organization and that was Robert. And so when Robert had a message to deliver or came to Atlantic City to have a conversation, we always knew that it was with Trump's blessing. And in most cases, it was something that wasn't really positive. It was kind of tough news.

Because he used his family, you know, for the tougher things. And I think he's quite frankly hiding behind a family member here doing kind of his dirty work in this situation.

BURNETT: Kirsten?

POWERS: I don't think the President should be the one doing what she was doing. I think it's completely appropriate for her to do it. And I don't, you know, maybe he did know about it. It's just not that unusual to try to find a job for somebody who is disgruntled. That's all I'm saying. It's not, you know --

[19:15:08] BURNETT: I know your point but -- I mean, there's no way Donald J. Trump did not know his campaign was going to hire Omarosa after she was fired from working in his White House, right? There's no way he didn't know that.

POWERS: I don't know how I'd became the Trump defender, but why did -- what would be wrong with that if he was trying to take a person who he knows is going to make a lot of trouble for him and have her on the campaign and give her a job where she's going to give speeches in support of him? Like why would that be a bad thing? It's certainly what I would try to do if I would --

BURNETT: I see the point. I guess I just keep getting caught here, John, on the morality of it which is she was fired from the White House for using taxpayer money unethically, taking cars. I mean, she was fired for cause, according to John Kelly.

AVLON: Yes.

BURNETT: You know, and so that's a person that he didn't wanted to use donor money to --

AVLON: Serious integrity issues effectively getting reward. I think the problem is you're getting hung up on the morality of it. I think we left that neighborhood a long time ago.

POWERS: Right.

BURNETT: I suppose. I suppose so. Nonetheless --

POWERS: Yes.

BURNETT: -- we try to carry the flag.

AVLON: We would like to think.

BURNETT: For morality when we can. Thank you all so very much. Next, the admiral who oversaw the bin Laden raid telling President Trump to revoke his security clearance. Former Director of National Intelligence General James Clapper whose own clearance is under review by the President is my guest. Plus, the Republican-led Senate siding with one of President Trump's favorite targets.

And you're looking at live pictures of the Apollo Theater. This is right here in New York. Fans from around the world paying tribute to Aretha Franklin. Larry King and Sam Moore, the artists behind the hit "Soul Man" will join us to talk about their funniest memory with the "Queen of Soul".

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:20:19] BURNETT: New tonight, a man who oversaw the Osama bin Laden raid is asking President Trump to revoke his security clearance. Retired Navy Admiral William McRaven writing, "Few Americans have done more to protect this country than John Brennan. Therefore, I would consider it an honor if you would revoke my security clearance as well, so I can add my name to the list of men and women who have spoken up against your presidency". Incredibly strong words from an American patriot and hero.

And out front now, the former Director of National Intelligence, General James Clapper who remains on the President's list of people whose security clearances may be revoked but at least as of this hour. General, we understand they haven't yet but, you know, that could change at any moment. You know Retired Admiral McRaven extremely well. What's your reaction to those strong words that he is sending to the President?

JAMES CLAPPER, FORMER DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE: Well, I thought his letter was clear, concise and very, very compelling. Here's a guy who has no political baggage whatsoever. Who has served his country with great distinction and speaking personally as a colleague and friend and Bill McRaven is a personal hero of mine. And I think a lot of people are going to sit up and take notice with that letter.

BURNETT: You know, there are a lot of Republicans as you well aware, General, who are actually defending Trump's decision to revoke John Brennan's security clearance. You know, there have been a couple who had criticized the threat of it, and I'll talk about that in a moment, but today, here's three who came out in his defense.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: Mr. Brennan has gone way over the line, in my view, and I think restricting his clearance, pulling his clearance makes sense to me.

SEN. JOHN KENNEDY (R), LOUISIANA: It's been totally political. I think I called him a butthead, and I meant it. I think he's given the national intelligence community a bad name.

SEN. JOHN THUNE (R), SOUTH DAKOTA: And I do think that the fact he's out there every single day acting in a very partisan way probably doesn't help his cause.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: So just to be clear, General, that was Senator Graham, Senator Kennedy and Senator John Thune. All of them coming to the President's defense and Thune and Graham often not doing that. Are you surprised that they're sort of implying pretty clearly here in some cases directly saying John Brennan is the one at fault?

CLAPPER: No, it doesn't surprise me that Republican senators are supportive of the President. That's been kind of the standard pattern here. To me, the issue isn't so much, you know, John's clearance or mine or anybody else's. That's kind of small potatoes. The bigger issue here to me is using the President's authority over the classification system and granting or revoking clearances as a political weapon.

And that, to me, is a much larger issue here and I think has huge implications. For example, and I'm just positing this, suppose the President, given his version to the Mueller investigation decides to revoke the eligibility for access to classified information by Mueller and his team. So I think, you know, I wish the senators would think about the larger implications here.

BURNETT: Yes. Obviously, they don't seem to be at this time. I mean, you know, President Bush's former Homeland Security Adviser Fran Townsend was talking about this today, General. She said something that I thought was really interesting about Mueller and what just happened to John Brennan. Here's her take on the implication of Trump taking away security clearances.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FRAN TOWNSEND, HOMELAND SECURITY ADVISER UNDER G.W.B: The President did this personally using his -- what we call his Article 2 powers as commander in chief. Let's be honest. If the President is relying on his Article 2 powers to remove a clearance, it's the same power he'd rely on if he wanted, for example, to fire Mueller.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Do you think that's the message he was sending? Look, I'm using these powers to do this, and I can use the same ones to do that. Watch out, Bob Mueller?

CLAPPER: That assumes, you know, constitutional literacy there. I don't know that he is too hung up on what authority he might use to fire anybody. And all I'm suggesting, here's another way to attack what he has characterized many, many times as a hoax and all that. And increasingly, he's gotten more and more aggressive about, at one point, he never mentioned Mueller by name. Now it's gotten very personal and all that.

[19:25:00] So -- And Fran is right. I mean, he could use that power under Article 2 to fire Mueller. Another way to do it, again, using the clearance, the eligibility as a political weapon, you know, to attack the Special Counsel.

BURNETT: All right. Well, General Clapper, I appreciate your time as always. Thank you, sir.

CLAPPER: Thanks, Erin.

BURNETT: And next, hundreds of newspapers from coast to coast taking a stand on the President's attacks on the press. Are they just playing right into Trump's hands and proving his point in.

And you're looking at live pictures of the Apollo Theater here in New York. It's the tribute here to Aretha Franklin. Larry King is going to join us live to remember the "Queen of Soul".

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BURNETT: New tonight, the U.S. Senate unanimously rebuking the President, passing a resolution affirming the press is not the enemy of the people. It's kind of, I don't know, sometimes it's moments like this and I said here's a television (ph) banker and I say, did I really just say that the Senate passed a resolution saying the press is not the enemy of the people and I'm an American and I live in United States of America? I did and I just said it and it's a fact then it's the Republican-led Senate that did it.

It comes after roughly 350 newspapers published editorials criticizing the president for his attacks on the free press.

OUTFRONT now, Joan Walsh, national affairs correspondent at "The Nation", and Ben Ferguson, host of "The Ben Ferguson Show".

Ben, I say this and I know some people may sort of chuckle when I say it, but I'm not chuckling. I can't believe that the Republican-led Senate just passed this today. To officially say the press is not the enemy of the people.

I mean, yes, it's a stinging rebuke of the president but I can't believe this is really happening.

BEN FERGUSON, HOST, "THE BEN FERGUSON SHOW": Look, there's a lot of Republicans that don't like the president and they said this will be a great moment to jump on a bandwagon with these newspapers and maybe those newspapers will give us some love. I'm not surprised.

BURNETT: Unanimous, though. Half these guys are out there defending him right now and revoking John Brennan's security clearance. This was unanimous.

(CROSSTALK)

FERGUSON: Again, but I'm not surprised, because any time that a senator can grandstand, they always will take the opportunity to grandstand. You look at these papers today. It did exactly what the president has been saying. You had 350 newspapers. It clearly colluding with a propaganda point of view to attack the president of the United States of America, and it is absolutely colluding with one another.

When you call all your buddies and say, we're all going to say the same thing and we're all going to wag our finger and we're all going to act like we're above reproach and we're all going to act like we're not biased when many of us are clearly biased, and a lot of these newspapers, the majority of them endorsed actually Hillary Clinton, and we're going to act like we're not biased. It's absurd to say that this today was not exactly what Trump warned about, which is there's a huge bias in a lot of people in the media and they act like they're not biased while they are clearly biased against me, and this just played into his hand.

BURNETT: But, Joan, to the point that Ben is making, "The L.A. Times" did not run the op-ed today.

JOAN WALSH, NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT, THE NATION: Nor did the "San Francisco Chronicle". They both endorsed Hillary.

BURNETT: Both endorsed Hillary now.

"The L.A. Times", I just wanted to read their reason. Quote: The president himself already treats the media as a cabal, enemies of the people, he has called us, suggesting over and over that we're in cahoots to do damage to the country. The idea of joining together to protest him seems almost to encourage that kind of conspiracy thinking by the president and his loyalists.

Do they have a point?

FERGUSON: Which is completely --

(CROSSTALK)

WALSH: Actually, I'm talking, Ben. Actually it proves the opposite point. It proves the opposite point

that there wasn't collusion. That some papers, some liberals. I know John Diaz from San Francisco. I lived there for a long time. Op-ed editor of "The San Francisco Chronicle". He didn't want to be part of it.

It shows there's diversity of the opinion, but the fact that so many papers did it, Erin, shows how dangerous the moment that we are in, where the president tweets that we're the opposition party. We're not the opposition. We are not at war with the president. He is at war with the truth.

FERGUSON: Erin --

WALSH: He's up to over 4,000 lies, according to "The Washington Post." you know, God bless Aretha Franklin. All day, we've seen her singing to the Barack Obama inauguration crowd and it reminded us of lie number one, you know, minute number one. His inauguration -- lying about the size of the inauguration when we all could see it with our own eyes.

I mean, he has degraded the truth.

FERGUSON: This is the thing, though.

WALSH: And he has called -- it's a totalitarian thing to say enemy of the people. It's dangerous.

FERGUSON: Erin --

BURNETT: Ben?

FERGUSON: Erin, here's the thing that's dangerous. When I go on the airwaves, I am honest. Intellectually honest with my audience that I'm a conservative with a conservative point of view. Look at the arrogance of the "Los Angeles Times" saying we're not going to do this while giving a review and attacking Donald Trump, the same way that 350 other newspapers did it today but acting like they're independent from the propaganda, which they clearly put in their paper today.

And then people praise them. Read the words "L.A. Times." It was more of a scathing review of Donald Trump than some of the papers that were intellectually honest enough to admit they're part of the propaganda.

(CROSSTALK)

WALSH: OK. Everybody is part of the propaganda.

FERGUSON: No, they joined in it. They joined in the bashing of the president. I'm not dumb enough to believe the "Los Angeles Times" when I'm reading their own words in the paper bashing the president and acting like they're not bashing the president, this is the reason why people don't trust the media.

BURNETT: The president had -- well, the issue with this is, this is a president that I believe, Ben, you would acknowledge does not tell the truth a lot, OK? He doesn't, about small things --

FERGUSON: I have said this before.

(CROSSTALK)

BURNETT: So that's a reality, right? So the press' job is to call that out. When you're dealing with someone who lies more than any other president has lied, and people then you're calling it out every day, it sets up this really great sweet spot, right? Because he's like, look, you're calling me out all the time. You're fake news. Well, then stop lying all the time.

FERGUSON: It's not that.

BURNETT: OK.

FERGUSON: Hold on, Erin. You're putting two things together. And this is the part where the American people have said they do not trust the media. Look at the Gallup polls that are saying about 38 percent, 39 percent of the American people only are only trust the media.

[19:35:03] The majority don't.

And the reason why is because there's two things. One, they act like they can never be challenged when they are clearly biased against someone and this administration which --

(CROSSTALK)

WALSH: No, they don't.

FERGUSON: -- that are clearly against this -- yes, this is my viewpoint. You can disagree with it, but there are a lot of --

WALSH: They can't be challenged, sure.

FERGUSON: The second thing is go back to the "L.A. Times" today, because this is the best example today. The "L.A. Times" lied to their readers saying they weren't joining in while writing an article ripping the president.

Anyone that is intellectually honest saw the "L.A. Times" and clearly you read their own words. They were ripping on the president. They can't stand the president. And then act like they're not biased while doing it.

Just be intellectually honest and admit, I don't like Trump. We don't like Trump.

Three hundred fifty newspapers colluded to have propaganda to go out there and attack this president. And I'm telling, Donald Trump, this is the type of stuff that allows him to have success because people are not dumb enough to believe that 350 newspapers --

BURNETT: OK.

FERGUSON: -- lining up against him is not propaganda.

BURNETT: Joan?

WALSH: I mean, I am a Democrat. I'm going to be out front about that.

Do you know how angry Democrats are about the way Hillary Clinton was treated two years ago? You hear it, Erin. I mean, there are always people --

BURNETT: No, well, they thought we were all biased, and we were sexist. Yes, that's what they feel. That's what everybody feels, Ben, who's in power.

WALSH: Right.

BURNETT: They think we're out to get them. That's the way it goes.

WALSH: Barack Obama complained constantly.

This is a different situation. This president crusades against the media and uses totalitarian terms. So, I can't believe that you're actually blasting a paper that didn't participate for not participating --

FERGUSON: They did participate.

WALSH: No, they didn't actually.

FERGUSON: They absolutely participated. Look at their own words.

(CROSSTALK)

WALSH: Oh, you have it your way. You define they participated. They said they didn't. We can let the viewers judge.

FERGUSON: I'm not -- it's insane. Read the "L.A. Times" op-ed. You just read part of the words on the show. They clearly were against the president today while acting like they were not. And then --

WALSH: They criticized him, yes. That's their right to do so.

FERGUSON: And they went back to other words where they were saying the same exact thing that 350-plus newspapers were saying today.

All I'm saying is don't act like you're some great newspaper with independence when you clearly were one of those that was ripping on the president today while acting like you're not. That's why people don't trust the media.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you both very much.

And next, Rudy Giuliani ready to fight a possible super counsel subpoena all the way to the Supreme Court leveling a major threat. So, what does this mean for the Mueller/Trump sit-down that's supposedly the president wants so very much. Plus, remembering Aretha. These are live pictures right here in New

York. We're watching the Apollo Theater as the crowd gathers and dances and sings in memory of her. I'll speak to Larry King about the woman who inspired so many.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:41:49] BURNETT: Tonight, Rudy Giuliani vowing to fight any attempt by Robert Mueller to subpoena President Trump, all the way to the Supreme Court. Trump's attorney saying, quote, even if we responded in 10 days to a subpoena, it would have to be decided by district court judge, you could appeal it in circuit court and then argue it before the Supreme Court if it ever got there.

OUTFRONT now, Democratic congressman from New York, Jerry Nadler. He is the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee.

And, Congressman, I appreciate your time.

So, you know, Giuliani says he's been negotiating in good faith on this interview. Whether it's Giuliani or his predecessors, this discussion about an interview has been going on now for what, eight or nine months. There has been no interview. Giuliani now saying he's going to fight a subpoena on an interview all the way to the Supreme Court which would indicate he never was planning to do one to begin with.

REP. JERRY NADLER (D), NEW YORK: Right, there was never any good faith intention to have this interview.

BURNETT: That's what you believe? This isn't just that they change their mind. That this is --

NADLER: No, no. I think it's probably true the president personally wouldn't mind an interview because he thinks he can persuade anybody of anything, but the lawyers around him know how easily he lies and are worried and don't want him being interviewed at all.

BURNETT: So you do believe the president, that he wants to?

NADLER: I don't believe, I think it's possible. I don't know if it's true, but it's possible.

BURNETT: So, you know, it's interesting because when President Clinton was being investigated, Giuliani had a totally difference view about subpoenas and whether they should be applied to presidents.

Here's -- I just want to play for you Rudy back in 1998, totally different point of view.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER NYC MAYOR: All the Watergate litigation resolved the fact that the president is not above the law, is not able to avoid subpoenas and the president has a right like anyone else to go before a judge and say, this is being done for improper purpose, this is being done for purposes of harassment and if a judge agrees with that, fine. But if a judge doesn't, then you have to testify.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: He's changed his mind.

NADLER: Well, I think the 1998 Giuliani was entirely right. The Nixon tapes case in 1973-'74 established very clearly that the president is not above the law and must respond to a subpoena. That was an eight-nothing decision by the Supreme Court.

Now, I understand that Larry Tribe is worried about Kavanaugh's reaction if he were on the Supreme Court. He's right to worry about that because Kavanaugh has expressed views the president almost has monarchial powers and is not subject to subpoenas or to anything, to most other promise.

But there are eight other members of the Supreme Court. And I would think -- I would hope that the Supreme Court would not believe a president is above the law and the precedent is very clearly.

BURNETT: There's obviously a question as to, you know, Brett Kavanaugh could be confirmed this fall and he could end up being the swing vote on this very issue. You mentioned Laurence Tribe, obviously, the --

NADLER: That assumes that there are four other votes that way. The last time we had this case --

BURNETT: Would you -- you're uncomfortable --

(CROSSTALK)

NADLER: Clearly, the last case we had this, clearly, it was a unanimous decision by the Supreme Court and this would be almost directly on point with the Nixon case.

BURNETT: So, Larry Tribe, obviously, liberal constitutional scholar. His tweet in full was, I reluctantly concluded Mueller should proceed without subpoenaing Trump and gambling on how Justice Kavanaugh would vote. The evidence already available almost certainly supports a report finding conspiracy with Russia and obstruction of justice.

Do you think that the evidence already available almost certainly supports obstruction of justice and conspiracy with Russia?

[19:45:07] NADLER: Well, there clearly was conspiracy with -- there's clearly been obstruction of justice. There was clearly conspiracy with Russia.

Whether the president personally was involved with the conspiracy with Russia, based on the publicly available evidence so far, we don't know. I assume Mueller --

BURNETT: But to you, being willing to get campaign dirt if it came from Russians is conspiracy? You're talking about the intent of that meeting alone. NADLER: Is that intent -- yes. I certainly think that the people who

certainly Donald Trump Jr. has very severe criminal liability on that. Trump Jr. that is. But I assume that Trump -- I'm sorry, that Mueller knows a lot more than is public at this point. And whether he thinks that an interview with Trump is really necessary or not or maybe he thinks that would resolve all doubts or give the president an opportunity to exonerate himself, I don't know.

But the public is entitled to every person's evidence. That's the fundamental foundation of American law. And no president, and nobody should be -- should be exempt from that. It may be unnecessary, but it's --

BURNETT: Still the right thing to do?

NADLER: If the prosecutor thinks he needs that evidence, he should get it.

BURNETT: All right. Congressman, I appreciate your time, as always. Thank you.

NADLER: Thank you.

BURNETT: And next, remembering Aretha Franklin. I'll speak to Larry King and Sam Moore, the artist behind the hit "Soul Man" about their memories of the queen of soul.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:50:30] BURNETT: Tonight, the world mourning the loss of the "Queen of Soul", Aretha Franklin, passing away this morning. She was at her home in Detroit. She had been battling pancreatic cancer. She was 76 years old.

Franklin was an artist who not only sang about respect, she demanded it.

Jeanne Moos is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Aretha doesn't just get --

(MUSIC)

MOOS: She gets a lot. Imagine a president adjusting your footstool -- sort of the same way she started at age 9.

ARETHA FRANKLIN, "QUEEN OF SOUL": They would have me stand on a little chair and sing.

MOOS: Singing gospel and then singing soul.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: How did she make us feel? We have lost the greatest singer of our time, tweeted Billy Joel. Stars like Barbra Streisand and Oprah posted photos with her.

The Queen of Soul died on the same day as the King of Rock 41 years apart.

Aretha wasn't lonesome, she died of pancreatic cancer at home with family.

Temporarily, political bickering came to a halt --

POPPY HARLOW, CNN ANCHOR: I'm sorry to interrupt, I'm very sad to report this morning --

MOOS: Fans imagined Aretha walking through the gates of heaven like royalty.

LARRY KING, FORMER CNN HOST: Are you a diva?

FRANKLIN: No. Would I be a diva? I'm really down-to-earth, I really am.

MOOS: Dictionary.com honored Aretha with this entry, even if the way she sang it made it harder to spell it.

BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT: R-e-s-p-e-c-t mean to her.

(MUSIC)

MOOS: "Respect" won Aretha the first of her 18 Grammys when they called to say she would be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, she thought --

FRANKLIN: Is this a joke?

MOOS: Her second husband, divorced, but still close, said she had a wonderful sense of humor.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can I ask you about sex? It's in a lot of your songs. I mean, it's --

FRANKLIN: Sex?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Lust.

FRANKLIN: Come on, no, no, no. You got me mixed up with somebody else, Ed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no.

MOOS: Mix up Aretha? Not possible.

She sang at Martin Luther King's funeral. She let freedom ring at the Obama inauguration.

And at the Kennedy Center, her performance drove Carole King into ecstasy.

President Obama didn't just sing-along, he wiped away a tear.

It happened again at another occasion when she sang "America," and the attorney general also cried.

The "Queen of Soul" able to touch our souls.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BURNETT: OUTFRONT now, Larry King, host of "Larry King Now" on Ora.tv, and former host of "LARRY KING LIVE", of course, right here on CNN. And Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member, Sam Moore, known for the hit song of "Soul Man". He has known Aretha Franklin for more than 60 years.

Sam, someone you have known so long, losing her, I know, has to be a tough moment. You're hearing so many remember her and sing in her honor, of course, about what an inspiration she was. What will you miss the most about her, your friend?

SAM MOORE, WAS FRIENDS WITH ARETHA FRANKLIN FOR 60+ YEARS: I think the difference would be the side I recognize most about Aretha was the gospel side. The pop side was one thing but the gospel side that I understood with her, the struggle, the hurt and everything that came out from her singing the pop stuff, but the gospel is the side I already knew about Re.

BURNETT: I mean, Larry, you know, you interviewed her, as you have so many people who are legends in this country and around the world. You talked to her just after she performed at President Obama's inauguration in 2009 in one of your interviews. I just want to play a clip from that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KING: What was that like for you yesterday?

FRANKLIN: What a tremendous, mammoth morning, evening, the ball, just everything, from one event to the other was just too much.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[19:55:11] BURNETT: I mean, Aretha wasn't just an iconic singer. She was a civil rights activist. You know, you saw in Jeanne Moos there, Larry, President Obama crying, and after he was crying, when she sang, he actually put out a statement.

He said, American history wells up when Aretha sings, this is in part what he said to David Remnick of "The New Yorker." That's why when she sits down at a piano, she can move me to tears. And he basically said: she captures the fullness of the American experience, the view from the bottom to the top, the good and the bad.

And that was how he talked about her and what she did for America and for civil rights. KING (via telephone): Yes, Erin, she was larger than her music.

Can't say that about many performers. The music speaks for itself.

But she was larger than her music. She was a great American, very smart. She stood up for lots of things.

But the way she sang and the way she moved people, you didn't need to use her last name. All you had to say was Aretha, you knew who she was. She was quirky. I love her little -- you know, she wouldn't fly.

BURNETT: Right.

KING: She wouldn't stay in a building over eight floors. In other words -- when we booked her on CNN, our studio was on the ninth floor, and so she wouldn't stay on the ninth floor. So, we had to interview her at the Mandarin Hotel on the fourth floor, because she had those little quirks.

But above all that, she was an amazing individual. And those are the kind of people that -- they come along, they're irreplaceable. You'll never see another Aretha ever.

BURNETT: I mean, Sam, you know, she played piano on your albums. What was it like working with her?

MOORE: I didn't -- you know, I have to agree with Larry about this much. When Aretha would stand at the mike and sing, she was any of us mortals, but once she sat down, she became immortal.

She was the greatest improviser you ever want to find. She could -- what she could do with on the piano with her voice was just magical. She was the best, she was the greatest.

Standing up, she was just like anyone else, you know, a great singer, good singer, good show. But that -- what made Aretha, Aretha's -- the struggle, the love, the hurt, once she sat down at that piano.

BURNETT: I mean, Larry, you know, she had -- I mean, her life is an incredible life story, right? I mean, her first child at age 12. Just think about that for a moment, and her second at age 14. She led this life of leadership and inspiration to so many.

One of the things that people remember, you know, her costumes. It really stood out. In that interview at the inauguration, you asked her about that infamous hat she wore at Obama's inauguration, that great hat. We'll show it.

Here's the back and forth.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Where did you get that hat?

FRANKLIN: Well, I bought it at a little millinery that I frequent out in Detroit. (END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: She was well-known for her fashion statements. But I love that one, a little millinery that I frequent in Detroit.

KING: Her presence, Erin, she changed the room when she walked in. She worked for my -- my wife asked her to work in our gala for the Larry King Cardiac Foundation.

She sang. She was fantastic. She was great with the children. She was great with everybody. She entertained.

She worked hard, wasn't getting paid but she gave a performance that night that was memorable. I'll never forget her. Erin, if you ever met her you'll never forget her.

BURNETT: Sam, you know, Barack Obama continued to say that she reminded him of the possibility of synthesis, reconciliation and transcendence. Do you also feel that way when you think about her and her role as a civil rights fighter in her way?

MOORE: I didn't get too involved in the civil rights thing with her. If it's getting involved, to answer that question, it was more about her father, which a lot of people forget to ingest. But I remember her when they would come with Martin Luther King and her father was there and this little girl would be up on the stage playing the piano. That's the memorable time for me.

BURNETT: And there she was, from that little girl through her whole life performing at inaugurations.

Thank you both so much.

And thanks to all of you for joining us.

Anderson starts now.