Transcript for Roger Stone reacts to John Dean's testimony, says he wants to help Trump win in 2020
Boone. Welcome to the investigation I'm cure Phillips along with my cohost Chris Weston a senior executive producer of our investigative unit also. Alley to caucus and investigative reporter with us. Joining us now Roger Stone former truck campaign aid and veteran GOP political strategists and of course sweet mustache that he is under a seven count indictment. In Robert Mueller is Russia pro he's also under pretty strict gag order so he won't be going into deet tails. About the Moeller investigation from the but this isn't the first presidential investigation that Roger Stone has been a part of let us not forget he is a big Richard Nixon fan. We're at the age of nineteen he was interviewed before the Watergate Committee he has we watch John Dean testify on the hill today we can't help but ask Roger. What do you make of this Roger. I think your calls for a reexamination. Of John Dean in his school in the Watergate I'm not certain why he was asked to test fire each day. 'cause I don't know what his expertise is in the question pool. Well I think the expertise is that they believe that he was party to obstruction of justice obviously forty years ago. And can shed light on whether or not the president now Donald Trump obstructive what do you think of that is that cable TV stunt or what do you think. I kinda think he's caught beneath their lower don't think he has any firsthand knowledge here is he was an attorney I believe he was disbarred. Certainly entitled give kids a legal opinion on volume true. But I don't know if he has any first hand knowledge. Roger if asked would you testify for this many. I can't see circumstances like my lawyers would allow. As you go on him under eight. Seven count indictment for lying to congress and related charges. I'm very limited in what I and say even in this. Pie cast so I think it is unlikely at my attorneys will have reached deuce. But do you think congress what would gain do you think they're playing here or chairman and handlers firing I mean. Why call John Dean he's not even a real witness they should be calling you lore they should be calling. You know many other would hope picks except chart what he what do you think it's like halfway impeachment now. Well he's obviously a media star he's gotten a lot of air time talking about this scandal based on his. Previous experience so I assume he is just trying in order to bring attention to the hearings. In fact the House Judiciary Committee. Asked me through my attorneys for. Documents and potentially testified in where he declined exercising my anxious amendment rights. Given the legal proceedings that I and chasing. Roger was thought and reaction to John teen coming for the committee. That you're now. Much earlier it was much earlier wars munch and go one day sent out increased 81 individuals. Who are Associated Press in call myself include. So like Chris mentioned we talk about dean and you know the police he was party to obstruction. I mean couldn't dean dissect portions of the Mueller report here and make assessments spying trumps conduct. While he and he's a former colonel or nagging me correct Gregor a legal opinion. I did not listen this testimony can't speculate about it. But I think just by appearing he has opened up himself to a reexamination. In fact he. I think as obscured his own rules very substantially. It is decision to appear to single day here in the Internet age particularly. That whole gospel before reexamination. Roger you've actually told wired side BBC chief anchor George Stephanopoulos John Dean I am not. I just wondered if you could extrapolate on that at all in the scope of John tools to. Being excited got it done being test against president 92 got bullied or point out that those comments were. Prior to the introduction issuing a gaggle thirty in my case. Good John teens say. Anything. To help the downs to build an impeachment case against trump. Well again he's a former attorney I believe he was disbarred. He could render a legal opinion but he certainly has no firsthand knowledge so I'm not sure. Star power of him opening. The hearings or the fact that we're talking about him kind of demonstrates. Why I think he has been cold. Roger one of the Republicans just to change her sights on 22020 now. Who are the only I believe Republicans who hat is currently going to primary president trumpet is governor bill weld to. Massachusetts former governor. I know you have supported him in the past and it's spoke highly of him for who you support if it comes down to the two of them. Well I was very high regard for bill well but I don't know what polls she's could partially be greeting. I have seen your the job approval from prelude from somewhere between 93 and 88%. So I just don't see Google market I don't see Republican primary challenge to the president. Being successful. I have even higher regard for pricing trumpet an extraordinary job you still in. I don't think he had any vulnerability. In the Republican primary that's significant because I historical basis. Convinced Gerald Ford Jimmy Carter who has had significant challenges within their own party. I'm going on to be defeated. I really chi C a bill weld as much as I like your. Having. Any kind of prospect of media. Legitimate challenger. How do you think could impeachment backfires on the Democrats can you talk about that. I sit certainly no constituency. In the country for impeachment. Case a particularly with a vibrant economy and you're talking about creation of six million new jobs. 650000. Manufacturing jobs wage growth that. It's patient American history. African America men and Hispanic unemployment at. Slowest time since we are well supported. Since he began keeping statistics. A good idea I don't see. They're being any fervor in the country for impeachment. Beyond rabid part of six. So what's trump strategy here. What's he what's he do from this point forward. Well what he should usual his record got me I agree with his assessment that there is no structure didn't know collusion. And my don't think there's any proof to the contrary. But he should keep it positive and wrought on the record he's got a great record true. You know announcement out of Mexico or demonstrate. The skillful use of care I don't think he looked scared by the way you think he'll actually liberty tool. You try to bring some of the countries who have. Taken advantage of us and treat them as to which they appear to have been successful. It employed in that way. Roger in the democratic. After expanding democratic could cool 20/20 candidates who'd do you think is most likely to succeed. I don't see a winner all appear particularly strong candidate in this pack of Democrats. I think Joseph Biden is an extraordinarily. Slow to candidate. The circuitry Iowa poll shows that 24. After two terms vice president in Indonesia kinda strange sort of weakness. If for no other reason because it legislator. He Turbo charge war on drugs which you might be who has been Donnelly Richard Nixon's single greatest mistake. But in ignominious. Gracious and expenses challenger Joseph Biden is responsible for the mass incarceration. Hundreds of thousands not millions of young black men for the first time nonviolent crime of possession of small amount of growth is truly trim leases destroyed lives. Rehabilitation don't want and the courses cost taxpayers millions. I think that is fatal flaw optically for a key constituency within the Democratic Party. Are you going to help triumph in any way during Tony Tony. I certainly hope to be free to do so as you know I have pled not guilty to all charges and I has vowed to fight. Poor vindication trial in November. And thanks for calling in right here after many thanks for. Maria take a quick break what we're bringing in more members of our team including senior national correspondent Terry Moran right after this. In one of my last conversation to have Richard Nixon. He told me. In a very peculiar manner getting up from his desk in the EOB office and going across the office and image stage whisper. Saying to me. John. I made a mistake here in. Talking to Colson about clemency for hunt deny. And I said yes Mr. President that was probably obstruction of justice. When Haldeman and Ehrlichman were departing. Days pled with the White House. That they be given pardons. I think because Dixon knew he could only compounded his situation at that point. If he refused to even entertain. The request. Finally let me close on the note and I explained this is some laying. And I certainly hope. John McGann. Is a key witness before this committee. Because of my testimony that the model code of BA BA today. Makes very clear in rule one point 13. The mr. McGann represents not Donald Trump. At the office of the president. His client as the office of the president. And I think he'd those that office this testimony before this committee. Thank you. And that was a blast from the past and former White House counsel John Dean now a staunch anti trapper who helped. Cover up crimes in the Richard Nixon administration. Then became a key witness against president Richard Nixon. And that was the House Judiciary Committee where he has been testifying that hearing titled. Lessons from the mullah report presidential destruction. And other crimes let's talk about it my cohost Chris last so senior executive producer of our investigative unit also Matt mosque investigative producer. And Terry Murray and we always love having you see national correspondent who covers all things White House they hill in. Everything in between and your historical context as always good to. So it why don't we when we start with you even Pataki about it and christened and mad as well. You know what do what do we make of John Dean. In this hearing. I don't know cure have I was listening to it and my my feeling is. You know look listen to John Dean talk about the Saturday night massacre and Horrow Haldeman and derelict man and Elliot Richardson. That's 46 years ago it would be as if in 1973 during the Watergate hearings they called witnesses from the administration of Calvin Coolidge. I mean it's. It and I'm listening to it and he offers his opinion which as you say is very anti trump piece of famous figure in American history who right now has very anti truck. But he offers that opinion virtually every night and mad hours CNN or whatever I'm not quite sure. What he's act what substantively he's offering the committee he's as White House counsel should do this you should not do this and in his opinion. You know what trump asked his White House counsel to do was obstruction of justice. I don't know that a quarter of did you pack of gum it seems to me amenity what is he offering. Terry don't you think it undermined. The Judiciary Committee it's like a mini pure ready to impeach her if you want to impeach the president of the United States. You should be calling witnesses but knew about impeachment. Like John Dean was in the impeachment of Richard Nixon I was in the Oval Office the president told me I could get a million dollars to pay off witnesses to purchase their silent. Now that's obstruction of justice John Dean who said that 46 years ago opining today. About Don again a Donald Trump. That's hot air but Terry is there just to try and see the democrats' point of view here is there any I'm. And need to test establish a predicate. For calling John McGinn is that the purpose of this is to. Essentially say. We're explaining why Don mcinnis critical to to become essentially the dot John Dean figure in this case I don't think I think it's for PR because everybody knows that the guy who is in the Oval Office with Donald Trump is a relevant witness. And if he wants to talk about things that are important and can say things that would be. You know help members of congress vote. On what they want to do all this it's obvious what his value would be you don't need John Dean who 46 years ago did something with another president. Tell you the Don mcinnis important I think it's for public relations they they're trying to bring the country along they're trying to bring Americans. To their point of view that this is. Very serious conduct that at long warrants at least an impeachment inquiry. If not outright impeachment does it does it serve a PR purpose than I mean does it achieve what they set out to achieve now with Chris I think it backfires. Does that idea I would argue though too that it exposes. Listen you can say what you want about maybe Donald Trump. Obstructing justice. After he you know will open by firing combing Unix archer and there's a different interpretations. On whether or not that's obstruction. But to compare it to Nixon there were underlying qualities. That were found the collusion was found in Nixon. And then they obstructed too cute not find the crimes in this case it's almost as if Donald Trump obstructed. Without a crime in my wrong Terry. Now that is that is correct that that can happen Martha Stewart went to prison. For obstructing justice when there was no underlying crime the judge found as a matter of law there was no underlying crime. But he said the lying to the FBI to the jury and they convicted of its adult lite of the FBI's that. Is the answer and on that but it is harder it's also harder because we're every have to prove intent to obstruct justice beyond a reasonable doubt. And it Donald Trump and if your prosecutor would you take the case to trial when trump could say I knew I was innocent of collusion. That's why I was angry that's why I wanted to stop this investigation because it was ruining the presidency that the American people and the constitution. It gave me to do good things for the country of course I was angry. So little more muddled than that I think because. What happened over the last few weeks. Where. Mueller himself came out and seemed to indicate that he simply could not. Indict the president for crimes because of the rules of the Justice Department. So it it believes sort of unanswered the question of whether there's an underlying crime or there isn't. Because he says he wasn't capable that that was congress' job. Two to take that on well edited to. You he could not say whether or not there was obstruction of justice because while he found evidence. Did that could be interpreted. As. Demonstrating obstruction of justice. The underlying crime did the president conspire or coordinate with elements the Russian government to attack the American election in various ways. Mueller cleared him on that. Back to Don McGann and and Nadler addressing. That with with John Dean asking if and again has a legal obligation to appear before the committee let's take a listen. Do you agree with the White House it is missing again still have a legal obligation to appear before the committee is so why. I have also read the well see opinion of may twentieth. That says that they. White House employee you're a former. White House employee. Has total immunity. From tests finder appearing before congress. That pushes the outer limit. Further than I have ever seen it push. And while they cite me in that memo. For two memos I received. Both of those instances the witness did appear. The Flanagan memo for example. If it was a range that he would. He would come to congress another instance those. When Henry Kissinger. Was asked to appear. We found a middle ground to have a median Blair house so there are solutions to this if the parties want oak cooperate. So I think this is a smokescreen. At this point and I hope that the a committee will pierce at the contagious. Court. Smokescreen set fair. Well I think it's at classic battle between the executive it doesn't want to anyone from the executive to talk to the congress a congress who has to do its job and I think he said something very important. He should there are solutions to this. If the parties want to cooperate that is the way those kind of informal arrangements. Frankly that we just saw between the House Judiciary Committee and a Department of Justice over the redacted portions. Of the Muller reports some of which are now going to be made available to the committee as they specified their request that negotiated. Came to an agreement. I think McGann has got to come before the committee at some point by hook or by crook and my hunch is most Republicans would agree with that not necessarily on the committee but in the country. You gotta truck rallies and ask people should all this come out. They believe in trump but they are Americans German Americans say they say should let it all come out of wash let's hear it. And if this is the guy who was in the room when the alleged crime obstruction of justice happened. He had he should come before the public can testify it's kind of a big gamble by the house Democrats in a way Tearrius did I mean. There's no assurance that when Don me gang gets there. He is gonna paint a picture that is uglier or worse than the picture that's painted in the Muller reports he could actually clean it up for them he could. You know good clearly one of the reasons that he. That he spoke to a Mahler and and demolished team is. His own potential legal jeopardy. Whether it. He was worst casing worst case scenario in. Everything drove told him. And then putting it all out there to say look I am come and completely clean. Now under questioning magic sure until Monday that the Chenault. There were a lot of things going on trump was furious that he wasn't able to get negotiations with North Korea up you know front and center before the American public or whatever. Because of an investigation that he knew. He was he was not involved in any kind of conspiracy with Russia and in a Meghann your apps they write might. Might do that or might go the other way and say boy I really felt the heat and from that guy. Either way it he's stick critical witness because he after all is the council was the council in this White House not the White House. Richard Nixon who's been dead twenty years now and more and I just don't get the John Dean thing of the. Well well I also know Bennett I think Kellyanne Conway and I believe she has a point said. If Tom McGinn had such a problem at the time when this obstruction was going on why didn't he leave. You know that he stayed on. Fifteen months later. And so he's got to answer YNN. And that's may be an answer that Jerry Nadler is not gonna wanna hear. Because actually that's the way Uga administration's work in my advice to me except my advice I don't know peace gonna say that but it's very possible it's a fair argument to make. It is and I should say one thing about the whole Watergate thing and the underlying crime you know Watergate was a gigantic. Criminal conspiracy being operated out of the White House they were paying. Cash. To buy silence they were manipulating. Agencies of the government to block a criminal investigation. They were perjuring and encouraging perjury and writing the script from perjury from the west wing of the White House itself. The attorney general of the United States went to prison. Another attorney general of the United States went to jail the secretary of commerce went to prison. You know the head of the well ahead of the president's reelection campaign went to prison the White House counsel went to prison the White House chief of staff went to prison. We are within a country mile of that. So. When it comes to John dean's credibility. You know in light of everything you just sent. This you know one that should be testifying right now I. I mean he's brings some historical perspective I I think it's interesting that that he could support him against testimony to got McGann and dean could come in and say you know. That sounds an awful lot like the kinda lines that Richard Nixon was crossing MA I suppose but even that seems somewhat distant it just. If the Democrats job here is to build a case. With the American people that this needs. Further investigation perhaps to the level of impeachment American to Blarney. Think they know the story and they're kind of exhausted by it so that the Democrats have got to lay out facts damning facts. That that indicate that the congress must take up this responsibility. Does facts are there if you want to look at them and a certain way in the Muller report. These hearings it seems to me should be about dramatizing them not with not with a witness from 46 years ago. But but with witnesses from today. Ned dean you know was an active participant he would be he did he was convicted of obstruction of justice who's part of a cover up in Watergate. And one of the only reasons. That he decided to flip and turn against Nixon. It's because it feel the noose around his neck he was going to be the fall guy any and so he was saving his own skin there wasn't entirely an admirable. But I EI I got I remember watching those hearings is I'm old enough to remember. My dad you know was was not a fan of Nixon's he was watching it my dad had a photographic memory and it was this native John Dean testify about. The meeting in the White House where he tells Nixon there's a cancer on the presidency and that we need a lot of money to buy the silence of these guys and Nixon says how much and John Dean says while he just talks a figure out the census a million dollars Nixon to so we can find a million dollars. And to my dad's decisions that guy's a photographic memory I know he's got a memory just like mine. And sure enough the next tapes come out and it's almost verbatim. That when that conversation and many others so. Dean's credibility. His motives can be questioned. Because he was trying to save his own skin but the tapes proved his memory solid. That's it for us today thanks so much for joining us please be sure to hit subscribe and leave essar rating and remember new episodes dropping every Tuesday so thanks so much to our producers Caitlin Fulmer terror Hastings. And Emily were taos ski rental seat back here next week. For another episode of the investigation. Blue.
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