Transcript for US sanctions 17 Saudi officials for role in Khashoggi's killing
And good Thursday after an empty lot Devin Dwyer ABC news Washington welcome to the briefing room great to have White House correspondent her primary with us State Department reporter. Connor Finnegan here as well and it is snowing down here in Washington hope you're staying warm wherever you are take a live look now. At the capitol look at that we are in full on blizzard isn't wintry mix and we got wintry mix. And of course congress is in town today are hard at work underneath the dome there. Also trying to steal form. Today and digesting the news out of Saudi Arabia this morning the big headline involving the death of Washington Post journalist columnist. I jamarcus shall be who was murdered last month. It's hot in Turkey via Saudi officials the Saudi prosecutor to conduct an investigation this morning that Iran announced that it indicted eleven saudis. Recommended a death sentence for five of them in connection with the killing them jamarcus show he. Obviously it was a rendering gone wrong and he was drugged dismembered some pretty gruesome details they're Connor Finnegan you've been following this story. One thing that struck me was this official finding from Saudi said that and the yes. The crown prince who had known how. Of this whatsoever right does that hold water water US officials saying that some in the US officials do not agree with privately you know it's a government officials. May not go that far but we've heard a lot from Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill. That clearly everything and the happens in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia must happen either with the consent or at least the oversight of the crown prince. A young guy but he's really consolidated power behind his father king some on. And it's clear that he handed out were not just jamarcus show you but many of his critics abroad. The comments so this operation. That that was underway it's hard to believe it didn't happen without him. And part of the problem for the saudis is that their story continues to change as you mentioned you know. Now finally revealing. Or admitting that you know he was dismembered that he. That there was an intention to kill him who right away when he entered the consulate in Istanbul that flies in the face of everything that they said before. So this is some trans. Currency terror the White House is so they want full transparency at least a payment service to that knowing that. Saudi Arabia is a pretty delicate ally the trump administrations tried to defend. Rain actions right now from that treasury we saw seventeen. People from Saudi Arabia issued sanctions and that you know they were their visas were revoked and believe it flowers and other major outlets in Asia and same issue is and he's earned me among them are the eleven people that were indicted for insider I guess you're basically sanctioning people who are going to jail. An eighteen in the Mercury in custody right there already I'm Karzai sanctions its own fact let's just put it up we've directly from Republican senator Rand Paul of Kentucky. I'll hear your seen some of the highlights of the sanctions. Has just said fifteen man team that went into Istanbul. 22 Moorer. Jamarcus show he. It has been sanctioned importantly to you know the consul general and assembled a man who oversees that consulate. Is among those being sanctioned now as well and his senior advisor to crown prince Mohamed and summoned some it was very close to him and themselves could tiny. Who is really had a a fall from grace has been one of the the he and the real scapegoats in this entire episode was probably directed by the conference to carry this out and is now become one of the Foreman for tonight. It can actually sanction the crown prince which sent some see as the actions that the the real true punishment as Saudi Arabia on the operation yeah Salinas aren't our relationship between Saudi Arabia and diplomatically and Chris. On Capitol Hill of course are calling all of this out Rand Paul on close friend of the president Republican senator from Kentucky. Made this observation on Twitter just a little while ago he says United States is to project strength when dealing with Saudi Arabia putting sanctions as Connor was just saying. On people who are already in jail means nothing. These individuals might lose their heads you think they care we're doing were pretending to do something and we're doing nothing I guess that puts the question on the table what more. Can or will the trump administration do beyond sanction these people that are already behind bars. Yeah that's right you know how high are they willing to go the problem though is that the saudis have now laid out in case. Where the deputy intelligence chief. Is really the one they say is responsible for initiating this entire operation they've created this sort of chain of command and they're now holding all of those people responsible just 21 of them. In total that are in custody. And so far the US hasn't contrasted with that narrative that not an anything it's it's a target people outside of that chain of command and move beyond it. Whether or not they're willing to do that is is the big question now is terrorists that it could have. Really dire implications for the relationship with Saudi Arabia and the president has yet to win terra on. The latest developments today certainly but it given any hint of what further he might want to see done to Saudi with respect. Right you saw the prank the president really could not handle the pressure especially from the press the Washington Post day yesterday the headline. He actually call the Washington Post reporter to try to clarify that he was taking its death seriously. I'm but yet he did come out. Off the bat from the beginning saying we don't wanna cut arms sales with Saudi Arabia that's something that Rand Paul has called for I'm and so. At the end and friends as he doesn't want to lose millions of jobs the actual figures are. Quite minimal and you think about it by. He's clearly thinking a business interests before I diplomatic. Namely she much where coming this story think the next should drop will be up on Capitol Hill where the senate is still reacting digesting this news today and as terrorists alluding to. Potentially arm sales on the table. Some action were there before the end of the year. Up meanwhile speaking of the senate and those two contested. Senate races which Ers we're still waiting. The results for the results from from Tuesday's election. A week ago live though they're still in flux down in Florida what a mess down there let's bring in our political reporter Chris good who is. College it tracking all the developments in fact we have just recently passed the state mandated 3 o'clock Thursday deadline Chris for the recount to be finished the results to be certified. So were to think Stan. That's right and they didn't make it not all counties have completed their recounting by 3 PM deadline has is going on Florida. He had two races and governor's race that's separate its very close that separated the little bit more widely than a very very close senate race that's point 15 percentage points. Between sitting senator Bill Nelson a Democrat. Governor Rick Scott the Republican challenging and they've been recounting votes carries had until 3 PM today to finish and Palm Beach County key democratic county in South Florida. Did not make the deadline it had problems with their machines this week machines and overheated. Stopped functioning. And the S supervisor of elections and that counting descent. Not very long ago we didn't make it we tried our. Asked so what happens if they don't make it does that mean the original results from Tuesday's election. Stand as they originally worm and that particular race. Well here's the thing they're still counting votes there's recounting and then there's counting there's still an unknown number of overseas military ballots coming into Florida. People who live overseas people who are active duty military. Need to vote by mail because they're not in their home county. They have until Friday to have their ballots returned that's tomorrow so counties really will continue counting one way or another until Sunday. It's unlikely you'll get a result. And any official kind until Sunday. Meanwhile what's happening today. Regardless of whether all counties finish finish counting in the meantime where we're on our way to manual recount there is as close enough that. Now they'll have some ballots set aside. They counties will have to go through by hand. And I try to examine between now and Sunday. And that you're talking about is the senate race which is between Rick Scott the Republican Bill Nelson the incumbent Democrat that's very very close. On the but is your sense Chris that the governor's race. It's is pretty much going to be settled that won't go to a hand recount. The governor's race will likely not go to a hand recount there's state threshold the race has to be. Within point 25 percentage points the governor's race is currently outside that so you know mayor Andrew Young has said we need to count every vote. And as I mentioned there's an unknown number of votes yet to come in for military and overseas voters but it appears much less likely that that race we'll go to a manual recount. Current were inching towards a conclusion in Florida Chris thanks so much let's take a look. At where things stand in this in the battle for the senate just for those keeping score at home the big picture here we went into election night with 5147. Control for Republicans in the United States senate that there are two races undecided we've been talking about Florida the Bill Nelson. Rick Scott race but of course terror there is a pretty wild race playing out in Mississippi. You've kept some eyes on that they're surprisingly close as a runoff coming up and Mike. SB former Clinton official Democrat got one and again Cindy hunt Smith the Republican she she was back for prison trump. Right exactly and we knew this was coming this isn't a surprise that it's just a nut does more of the mid term is playing now and I think at the then it's an indication show though that the Republican Highsmith has it's only right now but. Very little Democrats and all the pulling us out of our hot and Natalie some things right exactly. So here we are something to track coming up just after Thanksgiving. Meanwhile on the house side. In the equation the battle has been heating up for who is gonna lead the house Democrats and their new majority we've been following it closely this week is Nancy Pelosi. Has defiantly asserted that she will be the next speaker of the house but. A growing number of Democrats and I knew her party saying not so fast her. Let's bring in our. House reporter Ben Siegel who joins us from Capitol Hill he's been tracking. That development and then were learning and getting word now that some Democrats are coming out of the woodwork to challenge her. I Nancy Pelosi potentially for speaker tell us what you're hearing. That's right DeVon one of the biggest developments appear. The last 24 hours is that Marcia fudge a Democrat from Ohio a former a leader of the Congressional Black Caucus. Has said that she's considering running against and Nancy Pelosi to challenge her to be speaker. In that race she's taking up the call that a this small but very determined band of Pelosi critics in the house have been calling for they want new leadership it's a mix of current members and if you. In coming Democrats some of the majority makers who ran on a call for new leadership. So she'll soon of those calls. She is not notably declared that you running for policy that some an apple and Nancy Pelosi her aides and her supporters of which there are many. In the house have pointed out that the fund is not quite in the race. But I look I think it's still a numbers game for Nancy Pelosi she's the favorite and it's her salutes. So will talk about the numbers in the second but here's what Nancy Pelosi had to say earlier today when asked about. This growing number Democrats opposing it was. I have overwhelming support. In my caucus to be speaker of the house and certainly we have many many people and that caucus. Who. And it could serve in this capacity I happen to think that at this point I'm the best person for that you are just it's. It's important to say to everybody come on in the waters from armed. Water is warm ban. Marcia fudge dipping her toe. Who else are you hearing out there who went it went what are people whispering about who else could be joining her. And in a national public challenge to Pelosi. What's interesting is that after Marshall fudged. Says she's considering this another name that you hear. Being thrown around is that Karen bass a Democrat from California a number of another member of the black caucus. She somebody has some of these anti policy folks have floated as a alternative she came out today on Twitter at to support Nancy Pelosi for speaker. So it's very much a scramble behind the scenes right now for Nancy Pelosi and her team to make sure that. They can the limit the number of of of critics and for the anti Pelosi folks to make sure they can stick together and large enough number system to deny her that the gavel. And of course Karen. Is a huge story April because Nancy Pelosi is a political icon right someone everybody in this country knows by the alike hater and but also because in years certainly a student in this town the speaker of the house is an incredibly powerful influential. Critical position in a governments in the line of succession. Brian president from certainly has made a big part of his. Mid term campaign to make. Nancy posted boogie man but then dirty little secret in the White House is that they rather work with a double lane knows in the double they don't know he. And that he would rather work with Nancy Pelosi then with an unknown fire. Interest and so Nancy Pelosi is the person or whoever is the next speaker of the Democrat democratic house. Determines of determines legislative agenda basically drives the train for Democrats. And will be sort of leading the charge and holy president she's going to make deals and that's how president county is Strathairn you'll see more and wanted out right now exactly. Also keep ours amount and I think Steven Seagal for his reporting up on Capitol Hill. Off finally today what's the president's thinking about terror he is currently. Is being mysterious I think is it is a good word this week he's. Limited his public appearances he's tweeting. Sort of at a higher rate than usual perhaps and today he's back to talking a lot. About Bob Mueller. Right which is suggested that there's going to be some sort of activity if there is going to be activity and that front it would likely happened this. Tomorrow once before in the at Thanksgiving. Holiday break usually these indictments come down at the end of the week. Friday. Late afternoon generation watching ABC news yeah. So when we've sort of picked up on it and then when the president comes back around I think something like six tweets today tweeted on Bob Mahler. The special counsel investigate he sees that the inner workings are simply nuts. Well he says he's in the process of answering the questions and he bit his questions were sent over to with lawyers he met with. His lawyer Rudy Giuliani dates acting on last night they talked about the questions that knoller asked hands and and you know. He's got clearly getting some information about what they're looking in gene based on those questioned what. Is what you you just spoke to Rudy Giuliani the president's lead attorney in this matter what is Rudy Giuliani saying about those questions about. What Bob Mueller wants to know from the president in right. While he hasn't really given away much about that in his it would give away what would be in the report essentially but I think you can take from the president's suite that he's not too happy about it. Mayor Giuliani told me that. You know the president is. So sat but not angry he wants to know when this is gonna wrap up piece he actually that he didn't like the way that manna for -- airport is former aide is being treated he was indicted. And so. You know. All we can do you really it is talked his attorneys and look to the tweets because the president has been a little cryptic about this but our sources say that. He's unhappy with the questions. In Friday's are always big days in this town both at the White House in the Muller investigation at the State Department so we. Are closely tracking developments tomorrow of course the White House also just announcing by the way guys that. President trump will travel to California. Rare trip to California to visit with victims from the wildfires there on Saturday that the first time. Traveled to California president not the first time he did to a fundraiser but certainly the first time to visit victims and another disaster old ones as well orders were an attack on Iran's. Can hurt he's been criticized for not going out there for numerous forest fires the shooting there at the borderline. As country western bar just a week or so ago. So we'll see what happens on Saturday. I meanwhile. Everybody in this town's bundled up we'll take a closing picture as we leave you today. Of the White House Iraq since don't join us tomorrow Andre turner here. I'm Devin Dwyer turf primary greater confidence in my house. We'll see you next time.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.