PBS NewsHour full episode November 8, 2019


JUDY WOODRUFF: Good evening. I’m Judy Woodruff. On the “NewsHour” tonight: a view from inside
the White House. The latest transcripts in the impeachment
inquiry link the acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, to a quid pro quo with Ukraine. Then: revealing the secrets of a master. Explore the hottest new exhibit in Paris at
the Louvre, Leonardo da Vinci. VINCENT DELIEUVIN, Co-Curator, The Louvre
Museum: He decided to base his art on science. So he took a long time studying geometry,
mathematics, optics, anatomy, everything, to be able to reproduce it in his paintings. JUDY WOODRUFF: And it’s Friday. Mark Shields and David Brooks are here to
analyze a blockbuster week of revelations in the impeachment inquiry and the likely
entrance of former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg into the 2020 presidential race. All that and more on tonight’s “PBS NewsHour.” (BREAK) JUDY WOODRUFF: Threats, lies and raising alarm
bells. Two new transcripts today from those inside
the White House National Security Council adding to a week of testimony made public
in the impeachment inquiry. All told, career diplomats and President Trump’s
own appointees detail a coordinated effort to influence Ukraine in irregular ways. Lisa Desjardins brings us up to speed. LISA DESJARDINS: This morning, at the White
House, a president with fighting words for the anonymous whistle-blower who first raised
concerns about his Ukraine policy. DONALD TRUMP, President of the United States:
The whistle-blower is a disgrace to our country, a disgrace. And the whistle-blower, because of that, should
be revealed. And his lawyer, who said the worst things
possible two years ago, he should be sued, and maybe for treason. LISA DESJARDINS: This was a defiant counterpunch,
after the whistle-blower’s lawyer sent a cease and desist letter to the White House, saying
President Trump is threatening their client. It warned: “Should any harm befall any suspected
named whistle-blower or their family, the blame will rest squarely with your client.” That hit a White House unified in pushback,
as acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney rejected a House subpoena issued
last night to testify today. Legally, White House lawyers argue staff there
is immune from subpoenas, but the president’s rationale is more tactical. DONALD TRUMP: I don’t want to give credibility
to a corrupt witch-hunt. LISA DESJARDINS: Within hours, the latest
House deposition transcripts dropped from lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman of the
National Security Council, and Fiona Hill, who left the NSC earlier this year, this in
a week that marked a new phase in impeachment, as House Democrats led by the House intelligence
Chairman Adam Schiff moved to wrap up closed-door hearings, and move to public ones next week. REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): So those open hearings
will be an opportunity for the American people to evaluate the witnesses for themselves. LISA DESJARDINS: As part of that shift, Democrats
released some 2,677 pages of testimony given from behind closed doors this week. That was from eight key witnesses. Six had roles at the State Department, including
current and former ambassadors and Foreign Service officers, and two were from the National
Security Council. So what did we learn? Democrats see a pattern. REP. ADAM SCHIFF: We are getting an increasing
appreciation for just what took place during the course of the last year, and the degree
to which the president enlisted whole departments of government in the illicit aim of trying
to get Ukraine to dig up dirt on a political opponent, as well as further conspiracy theory
about the 2016 election that he believed would be beneficial to his reelection campaign. LISA DESJARDINS: Democrats point to revised
testimony by the ambassador to the E.U., Gordon Sondland, that he tied military aid money
to investigations the president wanted. Four other transcripts this week confirmed
that Sondland raised those investigations as a condition for things Ukraine wanted. All eight agreed on one thing: President Trump’s
attorney Rudy Giuliani ran an outside channel to the president, and the president was shifting
Ukraine policy, ignoring diplomats, removing an ambassador, and risking key support for
Ukraine. Giuliani himself has not testified, and has
not been asked to testify by the House. In the past, he has insisted he did nothing
wrong and is being politically attacked. Republicans say, in these transcripts, there’s
no direct link to the president for those orders about Ukraine. They point out that Gordon Sondland testified
that the president specifically said no quid pro quo, and that former Ukraine envoy Kurt
Volker testified he heard nothing illegal from the president’s July phone call with
the Ukrainian president. Republican Jim Jordan: REP. JIM JORDAN (R-OH): Those facts are consistent. Those facts are clear. And Ambassador Volker, in his testimony, as
the special envoy, as the guy who has — who is the professional here, the guy who has
been focused on this, who is the special envoy to Ukraine, backed all that up in his testimony. LISA DESJARDINS: Jordan himself became news
today. In a highly strategic maneuver, House Republicans
moved him onto the Intelligence Committee, removing another member, so that Jordan can
be part of questioning witnesses in public hearings that start next week. JUDY WOODRUFF: And Lisa joins me now, along
with our chief foreign affairs correspondent, Nick Schifrin. Hello to both of you. A lot of reading today, Lisa, yet again. You were saying almost 800 pages. Tell us, what are the main things that stood
out? LISA DESJARDINS: Well, what is significant
today is, these are the two people who worked and one still working on the National Security
Council. These are folks who are longtime students
of foreign policy and intelligence, so they really are experts on this subject matter. And these are, again, two more voices very
highly concerned about what was happening. So let’s look at what we got from the transcripts
today from Fiona Hill and also Alexander Vindman. First of all, they agree that the acting White
House chief of staff was linked to the idea that Ukraine needed to come up with something
in order to get something from the United States. We will talk about that more in just a second. And then, also, it speaks to Giuliani’s motivations. Why was he pushing so hard in Ukraine to oust
an ambassador and also to sort of derail normal process there for the United States? And, then, finally, they both talked about
what they saw as a very significant risk to the United States’ national security because
it would be signaling that it is no longer as strong of a supporter for Ukraine. They were very concerned. I do want to mention one thing also about
these testimonies. Republicans say that Democrats have strategically
been putting forth the most damaging transcripts this week to the president. However, on the other hand, perhaps some of
those who would defend the president have decided not to testify at all. JUDY WOODRUFF: They have been asked. LISA DESJARDINS: They have been asked, but
have not testified. JUDY WOODRUFF: Have decided not testify. So, Nick, the first point Lisa made had to
do with the White House acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney. Let’s talk some more about how he fits into
all this. NICK SCHIFRIN: Yes, so the key is a July 10
meeting that Fiona Hill and Alexander Vindman, the two National Security Council staff members
who Lisa just talked about, testified today — or, rather, we got their depositions today. They were both in this meeting. This was a meeting between U.S. and Ukrainian
officials. And there’s actually a photo of that meeting
or right after that meeting, U.S. officials, Ukrainian officials. And the person second to the right, the tall
one, the bald one, second to the right, is Gordon Sondland, U.S. ambassador to the European
Union. And Fiona Hill says, this is what happened
inside that meeting. He said — she says — quote — “Ambassador
Sondland was talking about how he had an arrangement with Chief of Staff Mulvaney for a meeting
with the Ukrainians, if they were going to go forward with investigations.” This is the first time that we know of, of
a government official making this explicit. Ukraine’s government had to conduct two investigations,
one into the 2016 elections and one into Burisma, the energy company that Hunter Biden, Joe
Biden’s son, was on the board of, before Ukraine could see or Ukraine’s president could meet
President Trump. That order, according to Sondland, was authorized
by Mick Mulvaney. And this is what Alexander Vindman says about
the same meeting. He says — quote — “Ambassador Sondland emphasized
the importance that Ukraine deliver investigations into the 2016 elections, the Bidens and Burisma. This was the first time it emerged kind of
with a government official discussing it.” Vindman says, before that point, it had been
discussed by Rudy Giuliani, mostly in the media. And at that meeting, National Security Adviser
John Bolton turned to Fiona Hill and said, whatever Mulvaney and Sondland were doing,
he called it a drug deal and he called Giuliani a hand grenade. LISA DESJARDINS: And the big question, of
course, is, why was Mulvaney — if Mulvaney was doing that, where did that come from? JUDY WOODRUFF: And then Giuliani, you mentioned
his name in the report. It’s coming up again. LISA DESJARDINS: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: Lisa, we’re not only looking
at what he’s doing, but we’re also beginning to understand why he was doing it. LISA DESJARDINS: Right. This has been a central question for me all
week. And Fiona Hill was particular — had a lot
to say about this. She isn’t just someone from the National Security
Council. She’s a former intelligence officer. She worked in this field. And she’s someone who looks at people’s motivations
and strategy for individuals. And she had something to say about this that
I think stood out. Let’s look at her quote here about Giuliani
and why the U.S. ambassador of Ukraine was being forced out. She said: “The most obvious explanation seemed
to be business dealings of individuals who wanted to improve their investment positions
inside of Ukraine, and also to deflect away from the findings of not just the Mueller
report on Russian interference, but also the Senate report.” So let’s take those apart quickly. The business dealings. She mentioned a name that I had not seen in
testimony before, a man who is an oil billionaire in Florida. She says he was funding Giuliani’s efforts,
in the interest of the energy sector. She also goes on to talk about the Mueller
report and say she felt that Giuliani was trying to distract from negative headlines
about the Mueller report, as that was sort of taking up a lot of the space in American
news coverage. JUDY WOODRUFF: At that point. LISA DESJARDINS: That’s right. JUDY WOODRUFF: And all of this raising so
many more questions. So, Nick, you follow national security, foreign
affairs for the “NewsHour.” We have to ask this question. Hearing so much about Ukraine, about Russia
implied here, what are the implications of all this for foreign policy? NICK SCHIFRIN: We heard from Hill. We heard from Vindman. And we heard from all of those people who
Lisa’s piece laid out this week unanimity that the official policy that — President
Trump’s, by the way, official policy toward Ukraine was helping Ukraine in terms of economic,
military and diplomatic assistance. And that was important to U.S. national security
and an important deterrence to Russia. And the irregular policy, which we read today,
led by Gordon Sondland, led by Rudy Giuliani, was detrimental to U.S. national security
and helpful to Russia. Fiona Hill called the investigations that
Giuliani was advocating, including about the 2016 election, she called them conspiracy
theories, and focusing on them meant the U.S. was less prepared to prevent 2020 meddling. And here’s what Alexander Vindman said. He said: “I realized that, if Ukraine pursued
an investigation into the Bidens and Burisma, it would be interpreted as a partisan play,
which undoubtedly would result in Ukraine losing the bipartisan support it has thus
far maintained, and this would undermine U.S. national security.” President Trump’s policy was to support Ukraine. When security assistance was temporarily blocked,
he was going against the consensus of the entire administration and what the administration
believed was in U.S. national security policy. JUDY WOODRUFF: Its policy implications so
important for us to keep in mind throughout all this. LISA DESJARDINS: Right. JUDY WOODRUFF: And, Lisa, just quickly, you
were telling me, tomorrow, we will learn from Republicans? LISA DESJARDINS: Right. Republicans have the — they have the chance
to ask for their own witnesses. They will lay out who they would like. Of course, under the rules that the House
Democrats passed, Democrats must, some of them at least, agree for those witnesses to
be called. I know that Republicans are going to say they
want to call the anonymous whistle-blower. I would be surprised if any Democrat agrees
to that. So, we’re laying the groundwork for some potential
conflict early on. We will see who Republicans want to talk to
in the next day. (CROSSTALK) JUDY WOODRUFF: With the public hearings that
start next Wednesday. LISA DESJARDINS: That’s correct. JUDY WOODRUFF: Lisa Desjardins, Nick Schifrin,
thank you both. NICK SCHIFRIN: Thank you. LISA DESJARDINS: You’re welcome. JUDY WOODRUFF: And next week, the “PBS NewsHour”
will begin special live coverage of the House impeachment hearings. And that is on Wednesday, November 13, at
10:00 a.m. Eastern. Check your local listings. All of our coverage will also stream live
on our Web site and on YouTube, on Facebook and Twitter. In the day’s other news: A new book paints
President Trump as unfit to be commander in chief, and claims that senior officials considered
resigning last year in protest. The author is the same anonymous administration
official who wrote last year of internal resistance to the president. The Washington Post reports that the book
says — quote — “Mr. Trump stumbles, slurs, gets confused, is easily irritated, and has
trouble synthesizing information.” The White House has dismissed it all as lies. Former White House strategist Steve Bannon
testified today that one of the president’s longtime confidants, Roger Stone, was a — quote
— “access point” to WikiLeaks. The anti-secrecy group released e-mails that
damaged Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign. Bannon was subpoenaed to appear as a witness
in Stone’s federal criminal trial. Stone is charged with witness tampering and
with lying to Congress. In Iraq, the leading Shiite cleric, Grand
Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, appealed for the government to stop using violence against
protesters. But the day brought more chaos to the southern
city of Basra, where security forces fired tear gas to disperse crowds. New clashes also broke out in Baghdad. MAN (through translator): We call for reforms,
security, good living conditions for all citizens in Iraq. Corruption is rampant everywhere. The security forces are firing live ammunition. JUDY WOODRUFF: Elsewhere, Iraqi security officials
said that 17 rockets hit an air base that houses American troops near Mosul. There were no reports of casualties. Tensions spiked in Northeastern Syria today
when a Turkish military vehicle ran over and killed a protester. He was among a group who chased and pelted
a joint Turkish-Russian patrol with stones. The patrol was aimed at keeping Kurdish fighters
away from the Turkish-Syrian border. Brazil’s former President Luiz Inacio Lula
da Silva walked free out of prison today. The leftist leader’s supporters greeted him
outside. His release follows a Brazilian Supreme Court
ruling allowing inmates to remain free while they appeal their convictions. Da Silva, commonly known as Lula, is appealing
a corruption and money-laundering case that put him behind bars in 2018. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo challenged
NATO nations today to spend more on their common defense, in the face of Russian and
Chinese challenges. He spoke in Berlin, Germany, helping to commemorate
tomorrow’s 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. MIKE POMPEO, U.S. Secretary of State: As we
celebrate, as we take this victory lap, we must also recognize that freedom is never
guaranteed. We spoke to this. It doesn’t just happen. Today, authoritarianism is just a stone’s
throw away. It’s rising. And if — if we’re honest, it never really
went away completely. JUDY WOODRUFF: Pompeo also unveiled a statue
of President Ronald Reagan at the U.S. Embassy in Berlin. It overlooks the site of Reagan’s 1987 speech
demanding the Soviets tear down the wall. We will return to the anniversary after the
news summary. There was new unrest in Hong Kong today, after
a university student died of injuries that were suffered during an anti-government protest. He had fallen from a parking garage early
Monday when police fired tear gas. It was a rare fatality in the five months
of protests, but activists rallied to condemn police tactics and demand justice. Later, thousands of mourners gathered at the
garage to pay their respects. Back in this country, federal health officials
report a possible breakthrough in vaping-related illnesses that have sickened more than 2,000
people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
says that a substance called vitamin E acetate turned up in the lung fluid of 29 patients. It is used in vaping products sold on the
black market. Researchers may need animal studies to prove
that the compound is actually causing lung damage. And in economic news, lingering trade tensions
caused China’s exports to the U.S. to fall 16 percent last month over the year before. Meanwhile, U.S. sales to China were down 14
percent. Stocks still managed modest gains on Wall
Street today. The Dow Jones industrial average inched six
points higher to close at 27681. The Nasdaq rose nearly 41 points, and the
S&P 500 added eight. Still to come on the “NewsHour”: the wall
came down, but what came next? — the fall of the Berlin Wall, 30 years later;
Mark Shields and David Brooks break down the final week before open hearings in the impeachment
inquiry; and Leonardo da Vinci at the Louvre — an inside look at the year’s biggest exhibit. As we reported earlier, this weekend marks
the 30th anniversary of one of the most important historic events of the 20th century, the tearing
down of the Berlin Wall. The East German dictatorship collapsed, and,
shortly afterwards, so did other totalitarian regimes across the former Soviet Bloc. As the wall fell, so then did the Iron Curtain. But, as special correspondent Malcolm Brabant
reports from Berlin, Germany may have been politically reunified, but, in many ways,
it is still divided. MALCOLM BRABANT: Thirty years after its demise,
just a few hundred yards of the Berlin Wall remain, as a reminder. PETER SCHNEIDER, Author, “The Wall Jumper”:
The Berlin Wall wasn’t only a separation between the two city halves. It was the separation of Europe. ALEXANDRA HILDEBRANDT, Checkpoint Charlie
Museum: As long as Berlin Wall was here, it did represent the dictatorship. VERA LENGSFELD, ®MD-BO¯Former East German
Human Rights Campaigner: It made East Germany, the so-called German Democratic Republic,
a huge prison. MALCOLM BRABANT: Nearly 2,000 people were
killed by communist guards as they tried to breach the wall, erected in 1961 by the Soviet-led
Eastern Bloc to protect their ideology from Western values. Alexandra Hildebrandt runs the Checkpoint
Charlie Museum, which honors the courage of people like this Czech family who crossed
the Iron Curtain in a homemade hang glider. ALEXANDRA HILDEBRANDT: The wish of the people
to be free is stronger than all the walls in the world. MALCOLM BRABANT: Former Soviet President Mikhail
Gorbachev was a principle catalyst for change, with his policies of perestroika, meaning
listen, and Glasnost, meaning openness. In the autumn of 1989, Gorbachev visited East
Germany and urged its hard-line leaders to reform. Anti-government demonstrations intensified,
offering hope to East German historian Stefan Wolle, frustrated by his inability to travel
outside the communist bloc. STEFAN WOLLE, Former East German Historian
(through translator): In the autumn of ’89, we first of all wanted freedom, and the fall
of the wall was a surprise that took place faster than most of us had expected. OLIVER BERLAU, Former East German Civil Servant:
My heart was beating faster. And I thought, is this true? This is madness. MALCOLM BRABANT: Oliver Berlau became a history
maker 30 years ago. A former tank commander and Foreign Ministry
official, Berlau’s exuberance and that of tens of thousands of East Berliners fashioned
one of the most important events of the 20th century. OLIVER BERLAU: All of a sudden, people said,
do you want to climb up? And hands stretched out, and I was given a
leg up, and I’m standing on top of the wall. And I thought, like, this is impossible, this
can’t be happening. And I jumped down on the other side of the
wall, and I said, I’m standing in the West. I’m in the West. VERA LENGSFELD: This photo was done by the
Stasi when I became a prisoner. MALCOLM BRABANT: Vera Lengsfeld’s credentials
as an East German human rights activist helped her become a lawmaker in Angela Merkel’s center-right
party after unification. VERA LENGSFELD: I know of nobody who thought
that it might be able to get rid of the wall and to get rid of the socialist system, so
it was a victory of which we had never dreamt. MALCOLM BRABANT: To reinforce that victory,
Western consumerism has engulfed Checkpoint Charlie, once a tense frontier crossing in
the no-man’s land of mutually assured destruction, now an essential stop on the selfie bucket
list. The Berlin Wall may have been a symbol of
dictatorship, of repression, of communism, the antithesis of democracy. But, for the West, it also represented certainty,
because it defined global divisions. PETER NEUMANN, Director, International Center
for the Study of Radicalization, King’s College: For sure, during the Cold War, the world was
easier. Everything was related to the conflict with
the Soviet Union. And, sometimes, that didn’t actually make
sense. MALCOLM BRABANT: Peter Neumann was born and
raised in Bavaria, in what was West Germany, and lectures on security, terrorism and war
studies. PETER NEUMANN: The West supported the Mujahideen
in Afghanistan because they were fighting against the Soviet Union. But, by doing that, we inadvertently created
the people who are now fighting us as jihadists. We didn’t realize that at the time, because
our only thought pattern, our only way of conceptualizing these conflicts, was in terms
of the Cold War. So, whilst it was easier, that doesn’t mean
it was always correct. MALCOLM BRABANT: In common with other experts,
Neumann doesn’t believe the reunification of Germany has been a total success. The East German economy was moribund, and
many of its labor-intensive industries collapsed once exposed to free market forces. Author Peter Schneider has documented the
changing fortunes of his home city, Berlin. PETER SCHNEIDER: I had thought that it would
take one generation to unify the Germans. It will be more than two generations. People around 50, if they left their job,
they had no chance to find another one. And their kids saw that. Many of them see the unification as an act
of imperialism. STEFAN WOLLE: And, suddenly, an enormous amount
of people lost their jobs. And, naturally, they were disappointed about
it, and said, so this is the unification? What good are freedom and democracy, if I
have no job and cannot buy any of the nice things I always wanted? MALCOLM BRABANT: Successive German governments
have spent heavily in the former East to try to raise living standards, but Peter Neumann
says, financial investment alone can’t counter divisions in outlook. PETER NEUMANN: East Germany never really confronted
Germany’s past. In Western Germany, we were from the very
beginning taught that we inherited the legacy of Nazism, and that we had to make up for
it, whereas, in East Germany, people were told, you are actually the successors of the
people that the Nazis fought against. You are the successors of the communists. So there is nothing you have to atone for. MALCOLM BRABANT: Anti-Semitism resurfaced
last month in Halle, the birthplace of composer George Frideric Handel. Close to his statue in this eastern city,
mourners honored two people shot dead by a neo-Nazi after he failed to enter the city’s
synagogue on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in the Jewish calendar. WOMAN (through translator): With our history,
it’s, like, a shame that now things like this can happen. MALCOLM BRABANT: At the synagogue, community
leader Max Provorozki feared Germany may no longer be a place that Jews can call home. MAX PROVOROZKI, Community Leader: We have
a problem in Germany, and I think it’s not a question to Jewish community. It’s a question for politicians. It’s very important that governments in all
countries find the special medicine. MALCOLM BRABANT: It isn’t just Jews who feel
under threat from the hard right. Richard Khamis came from Sudan 35 years ago
to study at Leipzig’s Karl Marx University. Khamis was here when the wall fell, and settled
in what he thought was a welcoming country. Now he’s too scared to go out at night. RICHARD KHAMIS, Germany: They insult you simply
because you are black. People are being beaten up, chased from places. You — as a black man, you can hardly go to
a pub on your own to have a pint of beer, because you get so scared. You don’t know what will happen to you. MALCOLM BRABANT: Khamis says attitudes changed
in 2015 after Chancellor Angela Merkel threw open Germany’s borders to more than a million
migrants. The influx appalled Merkel’s former ally,
Vera Lengsfeld. VERA LENGSFELD: Too many of them detest the
Western way of life. They don’t respect democracy and its rules. They don’t respect the women’s rights. I fear this will in the long run destabilize
our society. MALCOLM BRABANT: Mass migration has fueled
the rise of the right-wing AFD, or Alternative For Germany Party, in the east, where many
felt like second-class citizens after unification. The AFD’s European affairs spokesman is Hugh
Bronson. Is the party’s anti-immigrant stance responsible
for inflaming racism? HUGH BRONSON, Alternative For Germany Party:
I don’t think it’s true. We are just taking the worries of the people. We take them seriously, and we respond to
that. You can’t even discuss issues about immigration
in Parliament. Immediately, you are branded a racist. And this is a very unfair situation, just
asking, how much this country can accept, how much can we take in? MALCOLM BRABANT: But after the fall of the
wall, international borders lost their aura of permanence. ALEXANDRA HILDEBRANDT: The lesson is, there
exists no wall which stays forever. The lesson is that everyone, every person
in the whole world can be free, must be free. MALCOLM BRABANT: But if the wall’s specter
means that East and West Germans won’t fully embrace for at least another generation, then
immigrants have their own Iron Curtain to negotiate before this complex nation accepts
them, if indeed it ever will. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m Malcolm Brabant
in Berlin. JUDY WOODRUFF: As the impeachment inquiry
continues to ramp up ahead of next week’s public testimonies, the race for the 2020
Democratic nomination continues, and a former New York City mayor may throw his hat into
the ring. To help us make sense of it all are Shields
and Brooks. That’s syndicated columnist Mark Shields and
New York Times columnist David Brooks. Hello to both of you. MARK SHIELDS: Judy. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, we had a quiet week. You know better than that. There’s a lot going on. Mark, I think Lisa Desjardins added it up,
almost 2,700 pages released this week of transcripts, testimony of former — current and former
administration officials in the impeachment inquiry. MARK SHIELDS: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: The president says it’s a witch-hunt,
it’s corrupt, doesn’t mean anything. Others have different views. What does it add up to for you? MARK SHIELDS: It adds up to that the hoax
charge that was leveled against the inquiry, I think, has been totally rebutted and refuted. And I think that Republicans, quite frankly,
on the committee didn’t lay a glove on any of the witnesses. And it shows, more than anything else, to
me, what one person standing up, the whistle-blower, did. It emboldened, inspired, energized people,
and to his credit. And the whistle-blower’s initial statement
has been fortified and ratified and certified by subsequent witnesses. JUDY WOODRUFF: What does it add up to for
you? DAVID BROOKS: Even more guilty than last week. New and improved guilt. I mean, we’re learning the same story over
and over again, but we’re learning it with more evidence, strength and more underlining,
that the quid pro quo really was a quid pro quo. It was not just a phone call. It was not just a few meetings. It was a concerted campaign. The questions remaining to me are, where did
it all start? Did Donald Trump think of this conspiracy
theory in his head? Did somebody else direct it to him? And so how did it get in his head? Second, how clear a role did Giuliani play? Will the Republicans try to throw Giuliani
under the bridge — or under the bus, whatever you throw people under, and say, it wasn’t
Trump, it was Giuliani, and it was Giuliani serving his clients? And so those are still remaining. I think we have learned nothing dramatically
new. It just reinforced what we already knew. JUDY WOODRUFF: And… MARK SHIELDS: Yes, I would just add that we
went from no quid pro quo to quid pro quo, but no felony. And… JUDY WOODRUFF: Because the White House is
acknowledging now that there was a discussion. MARK SHIELDS: Now that there was. So, the Lindsey Grahams and others of the
world who said there was no quid pro quo to begin with are now saying, well, I’m not going
to pay any attention to anything involved. There’s no coherent or consistent Republican
defense that has been mounted in any way, and in part because I don’t think there is
one. DAVID BROOKS: Yes. And it’s also become much more clear that
there’s tensions within the White House over how to handle this whole situation between
Barr and Trump, between… JUDY WOODRUFF: Attorney general. DAVID BROOKS: … Mulvaney and Trump. So people with different attitudes, should
we have released the transcripts? Should we have a press conference clearing
the president? And Barr doesn’t want to do that. And so you’re beginning to see some tensions
within the White House, as people to begin to look over their shoulder and see who’s
really going to take the fall here. JUDY WOODRUFF: We… MARK SHIELDS: Just — one thing I would just
add, Judy. And that is, the people who have stood up,
who have testified put their career at risk. Let’s be very frank about it. And there have to be dozens of other people
who are just as aware, just as informed, and just as alarmed who have remained silent. And I think it’s fascinating the people who
have stood up, doing so at their own risk. And it’s a reminder that those who are not
speaking, that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those in a time of moral
crisis who remain neutral. And they have to be terribly, terribly uncomfortable
tonight. JUDY WOODRUFF: And we will see more next week
about who is willing and who isn’t to come forward. But, David, we are going to have open public
hearings starting next Wednesday. How does that change the dynamic? We have already seen, as you said, a lot of
material. How is that going to change things, do you
think? DAVID BROOKS: Yes. Well, this is more a public education campaign. I would be very surprised if we learn much
new. The reason you have private hearings is so
you can understand the case in front of you. And then the public hearings are to educate
the voters. And is — have any of us talked to a Trump
voter who seems inclined to change their mind about Donald Trump because of what’s come
out so far? I certainly have not. And so I do not expect this to change many
minds. People are locked in about this guy. Nothing has changed their minds in three years. I would be surprised if anything changed their
minds next week. JUDY WOODRUFF: If that’s the case, Mark — I
mean, do you agree with David? MARK SHIELDS: No, I don’t. I like to agree with David, but I don’t on
this one. (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: I don’t think you can understand
the impact until you see the face and hear the voice of the people making this case and,
as I say, putting their own careers, their own professional lives at risk to do so. And these are people with very impressive
credentials, resumes of long public service. And I think I recall — David was too young. I recall Watergate, which was 45 years ago,
when, all of a sudden, there was a voice that said, yes, there is — Alexander Butterfield
— there is a taping system in the White House, and the impact that had on people. And when John Dean said, yes, the president
— I told the president there’s a cancer on the presidency. And I just — I don’t think you can overstate… (CROSSTALK) DAVID BROOKS: Yes. Yes. The only thing I would say, is, when Watergate
happened, if you asked Americans, do you trust the government to the right thing most of
the time, 60 or 70 percent said yes. And now it’s 19 percent. So, people don’t have high views of what goes
on in Washington and they are not likely to grant it legitimacy. Secondly, when — Watergate, the Democrats
and Republicans differed, but they did not seem to be in different universes. Now they’re in different universes. And the cost of admitting your own party is
wrong and potentially handing power to the other party seems ruinous. And so people don’t want to make that call. That’s why they stick to their party, because
they think the cost of their party losing is the end of their own lives. And that’s a result of politicization. JUDY WOODRUFF: And, Mark, all this happening,
of course, as we begin an election — or we’re in the middle of, but truly begin an election
year. We’re getting closer to the primaries in January. If this — if the House does vote to impeach
and continues on, that would happen by the end of this year, Senate trial in early 2020. But there is a presidential campaign under
way. And, today, or this week, the news is that,
lo and behold, the former Mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg is looking seriously
at it, filing today, apparently, in Alabama to run. What does this say about the race, that he’s
decided to get in at this late — or to seriously think about getting in at this late date? MARK SHIELDS: Michael Bloomberg thinks he
should be president. That’s what it says about the race. And Mike Bloomberg has always thought he should
be president. There’s now, in his judgment, or those around
him, an opening. I don’t think there’s a craving in the country
for a fiscally responsible, culturally liberal candidate. I don’t recall any that won contested primaries
in battleground states recently. He’s got a great story to tell personally
of great personal achievement. He’s done great work on gun control and on
climate. But I just — I look at the record of New
York mayors in national politics. I remember the excitement that accompanied
John Lindsay and the fifth-place finish in Florida. I remember Rudy Giuliani dying in Florida,
never going to Iowa or New Hampshire, and Bill de Blasio most recently. There isn’t a national craving for New York
mayors. But maybe Mike Bloomberg will enjoy corn roast
in Iowa and clam bakes in New Hampshire. I just haven’t seen that side of him before. JUDY WOODRUFF: But he does have another identity
as well, doesn’t he, as a multibillionaire? DAVID BROOKS: And $65 billion, yes. No, I put — I give him much higher chances
than I think maybe Mark does. I think there’s anxiety about Biden. The question will be, will Michael Bloomberg
take on Biden directly? I think he more or less has to. If there’s — there’s no lane there as long
as Biden is strong. And so if there — I think there is going
to be a direct challenge from Bloomberg to Biden. We will see how that turns out. I do think there’s room for people who just
seems like the calm voice who could take Trump without many questions asked. I think there’s room for a candidate to say,
hey, I’m not an ideologue. I just know how to run things. And I think there’s some market for that. So, as long as the moderate lane is not held
by a strong incumbent, then I think there’s room for either Buttigieg or Bloomberg. Having said that, I think the happiest person
tonight has to be Elizabeth Warren. And the entrant of another moderate into the
race has to dilute the moderate vote. It has to make it more likely that Warren
and Sanders will be the nominee. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, should Joe Biden be… MARK SHIELDS: I agree with David on the Elizabeth
Warren part and that has the… JUDY WOODRUFF: That’s she the happy… (CROSSTALK) MARK SHIELDS: Well, that he’s suggested that
her wealth tax, which basically is popular with voters, is unconstitutional. So the one thing to look forward to from — you
know, because we who cover politics are really fight promoters — is this, that the old maxim
that all politics is local or all politics is national — all politics is personal. If there’s anything more personal than the
feud and dislike between Donald Trump and Michael Bloomberg, I don’t know what it would
be. I mean, he said in the speech at that 2016
convention, the richest thing about Donald Trump is his hypocrisy. I mean, he just really skewered Trump and
gave us a preview of what to expect. JUDY WOODRUFF: Called him a con man. But should — but, Mark, should Joe Biden
or the other moderates be worried about Michael Bloomberg? MARK SHIELDS: Sure. Sure. Judy, he’s got $51 billion. Joe Biden has money problems. Yes. You know, after South Carolina and Nevada,
we go to basically a national primary. JUDY WOODRUFF: So, money matters. MARK SHIELDS: And the Super Tuesday, and California,
he can buy his way in, make no mistake about it. But, you know, is there going to be a connection
point between Mike Bloomberg and Democratic voters? You know, John Lindsay was a Republican, became
a Democrat. Rudy was a Democrat, became a Republican. New York mayors don’t seem to really come
down on one side or the other. And I think it hurts them. DAVID BROOKS: He has to show he understands
Iowa. I mean, I think Mark is right about that. And he hasn’t always done that in the past. I think the way he ran the gun control campaign
was foolhardy, to have a New York mayor telling people in rural America, don’t own guns. I think that was a message bound to fail. And so — but who knows? He’s not a dumb guy. And he wouldn’t run unless he thought he had
a real path, because he had this exact choice four years ago, and he turned it down because
he saw no path. JUDY WOODRUFF: State and local elections across
the country, a lot of places across the country this week, Mark. People especially looking at Virginia, Kentucky,
Mississippi. Do we see anything there that tells us something
about next year? MARK SHIELDS: Yes. (LAUGHTER) MARK SHIELDS: Virginia is now more Democratic
than the country. It’s amazing. It’s now — forget it. It’s a blue state. Hillary Clinton’s margin was twice as large
in Virginia as it was nationally. And that was reinforced when the Democrats
took over out both houses of the legislature and now hold the governorship as well. Kentucky, Matt Bevin, the governor, abrasive,
had gratuitous fights, accused people of all sorts of things with vicious attacks — with
anybody. And he lost in a state that he — no Republican
should lose in. And to Andy Beshear’s credit, he ran a very
good campaign. JUDY WOODRUFF: This is the Democrat. (CROSSTALK) MARK SHIELDS: Yes. JUDY WOODRUFF: What do you see? DAVID BROOKS: Yes, I think the Bevin thing
is more Bevin. The Republicans didn’t quite well in all the
other statewide races in Kentucky. JUDY WOODRUFF: Kentucky, right, right. DAVID BROOKS: And so — but, that said, what
everyone’s noticing about this is what we have been noticing all along. The suburbs are not Republican territory anymore. The classic case was in Pennsylvania, where
— since I was born, the swing area of Pennsylvania was the Philadelphia suburbs, the Delaware,
Montgomery, Bucks and Chester counties. And they seem pretty Democratic right now. Trump isn’t — Republicans are doing a little
better out in west, out in the suburbs of Pittsburgh. But if you want to know where all the people
are, they’re in the Philadelphia suburbs. And that looks very Democratic. And if that trend is repeated nationally,
then that’s just very good for Democrats. MARK SHIELDS: Just — and the other thing
was health care. Andy Beshear… JUDY WOODRUFF: Beshear, Kentucky. MARK SHIELDS: … guaranteeing — and the
Affordable Care Act and the expansion of Medicaid, think about that, Medicare for all Democrats. I mean, what really wins? JUDY WOODRUFF: The message was that… MARK SHIELDS: They won in 2018 on preserving
the Affordable Care Act, preexisting condition, and extending Medicaid coverage. And… JUDY WOODRUFF: And this is in a red state. MARK SHIELDS: In a red state as well, yes,
no question. JUDY WOODRUFF: Mark Shields, David Brooks,
thank you. MARK SHIELDS: Thank you. JUDY WOODRUFF: Please do stick around for
an inside look at the year’s biggest art show, da Vinci at the Louvre. But, first, tonight’s Brief But Spectacular
brings us some laughs. Scott Aukerman helped to launch one of the
Internet’s most popular talk show spoofs, “Between Two Ferns.” A reminder, don’t take much of what Aukerman
says here too seriously. His story is part of our ongoing Canvas, coverage
of arts and culture. SCOTT AUKERMAN, Comedian: This is for PBS? QUESTION: Yes. SCOTT AUKERMAN: Ah, my people. (LAUGHTER) SCOTT AUKERMAN: “Between Two Ferns” started
when I was doing a television pilot. It was a really funny sketch show with a bunch
of different people. And I asked Zach if he could do a small piece
on it. And he said: “You know, I have always wanted
to do a public access talk show called ‘Between Two Ferns.'” You know, when you do public access, basically,
you have just a black background. I’m not sure what this background is. Oh, you have a brick one here. It’s slightly nicer, 10 percent. Whoa. Are these — I don’t know that they’re ferns. The TV show ended up not going forward. So, just as an afterthought, a couple of months
later, we put it on a new Web site called Funny or Die. And then millions and millions of people watched
it, and then celebrities kept calling us up, asking if they could do it. ZACH GALIFIANAKIS, Comedian: My guest today
is Justin Bieber. Was it really upsetting in Star Wars that
you didn’t have more scenes with Chewbacca? Does it make you sick when you look in the
mirror to see how handsome you are and to know that people are disfigured? Actor, writer, comedian producer, which of
Larry David’s skills do you admire the most? SCOTT AUKERMAN: President Obama was someone
that we wanted to land on “Between Two Ferns.” We just thought it was the funniest idea. ZACH GALIFIANAKIS: I have to know, what is
it like to be the last black president? BARACK OBAMA, Former President of the United
States: Seriously? What’s it like for this to be the last time
you ever talk to a president? SCOTT AUKERMAN: We did shoot it at the White
House, and I wanted to prove that it was the White House. ZACH GALIFIANAKIS: Don’t touch that, please. (BUZZER SOUNDING) SCOTT AUKERMAN: I actually loved the experience
of doing the Hillary Clinton one way more, because we shot for over an hour, and just
laughed a lot. And, with Obama, it was all business. Five minutes after he walked into the room,
they whispered to me, “The president has to go.” ZACH GALIFIANAKIS: I think that people deserve
to know, are you down with TPP? HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON, Former U.S. Secretary
of State: I’m not down with TPP. ZACH GALIFIANAKIS: No, you’re supposed to
say, yes, you know me, like the hip-hop groove. HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON: Don’t tell me what
to say. SCOTT AUKERMAN: When I first started “Comedy
Bang! Bang!,” I think I was trying to do a very
serious, but funny, lighthearted interview show. But now, when you listen to the show, I’m
basically just doing a joke interview. Gary, what do you have in your pocket there? MAN: Yes. Well, it’s a little communicator. SCOTT AUKERMAN: It looks to me like Listerine
breath strips, but it’s a communicator. MAN: Of course I disguise it to look like
that. SCOTT AUKERMAN: Oh, OK. (CROSSTALK) MAN: Hey, guys, call off the attack on the
Earth. SCOTT AUKERMAN: I’m essentially playing kind
of a buffoon who doesn’t really care about the answer, much like yourselves, presumably. I don’t know whether that’s because that’s
my real feelings about when I’m talking to people, or whether I just think it’s more
entertaining. But I do think it’s more entertaining. My name is Scott Aukerman, and this is my
Brief But Spectacular take on my life in comedy. JUDY WOODRUFF: You have got to love it. And you can find more episodes of our Brief
But Spectacular series at PBS.org/NewsHour/Brief. And now to the blockbuster exhibition of the
year, perhaps of many years, a celebration of Leonardo da Vinci 500 years after his death. Lines are long, tickets hard to come by to
see the work of an artist who was born in Italy and died in France, and who came to
define what we mean by renaissance man. Jeffrey Brown, of course, got there before
the crowds. And he has our report. It’s part of our ongoing Canvas, coverage
of arts and culture. JEFFREY BROWN: Leonardo da Vinci thought of
painting as a science, even the greatest science, requiring constant research and experimentation. How, for example, do light and shadow create
a sense of movement, of life, what’s beneath the surface of bodies or rock formations? And how does that affect the way they appear
to our eyes? How can human emotions emerge from the most
subtle and nearly endless applications of paint? VINCENT DELIEUVIN, Co-Curator, The Louvre
Museum: His contemporaries, and still today, when we have a look at his paintings, we are
amazed, because they look like nothing other. JEFFREY BROWN: Vincent Delieuvin is co-curator
of an exhibition now at Paris’ Louvre Museum. VINCENT DELIEUVIN: He decided to base his
art on science. But as he wanted to reproduce all nature,
he had to understand all the nature. So he took a long time studying geometry,
mathematics, optics, botanic, anatomy, everything on earth, to be able to reproduce it in his
paintings. JEFFREY BROWN: On display, some 160 works,
including pages of notebooks showing Leonardo’s endless curiosity. Studies by a young Leonardo are paired with
a magnificent sculpture by his teacher, Verrocchio. There are drawings, the famous Vitruvian Man,
a study of human proportions, a swirling deluge, a lovely and delicate madonna and child. And then there are the paintings. Only about 15 surviving paintings can be confidently
attributed to Leonardo. Experts differ on the exact number. But nine of them are here, all world-famous,
even if not all finished. Leonardo worked on his canvasses for years,
experimenting with an effect he called sfumato, the smoky shadings that create blended transitions
between shadow and light, tones and colors. The result? Lifelike vibrations, as in the late portrait
of Saint John the Baptist. VINCENT DELIEUVIN: On the face, it’s absolutely
wonderful. And please have a look at the wonderful lip,
the nose, and give the impression of vibration to the smile and give life to the expression. JEFFREY BROWN: A big reason the Louvre alone
could pull off this exhibition is that Leonardo spent the last years of his life here in France,
and he brought with him several important paintings to a large home about two hours
from here. In the Loire Valley town of Amboise, we joined
French writer Serge Bramly, author of an acclaimed 1988 biography of Leonardo that he’s continued
to update. SERGE BRAMLY, Author, “Leonardo da Vinci”:
Leonardo was looking for a patron who had some ambitions, the same ambition he had. JEFFREY BROWN: Which was what? SERGE BRAMLY: Which was everything. (LAUGHTER) JEFFREY BROWN: Everything, yes. The powerful patron, King Francis I, gave
Leonardo a chateau called Clos Luce, a short walk from the royal castle. By that time, in his 60s, Leonardo sported
his bearded philosopher look, familiar from a portrait by a younger contemporary that’s
shown in the Louvre. By all accounts, walking the gardens here
and throughout his life, Leonardo was outgoing and had many friends. SERGE BRAMLY: Freedom was so important Leonardo. JEFFREY BROWN: He was gay and also a vegan,
opposed to killing animals. How did people in his time see him, I mean,
that even the king of France would want to bring him here? SERGE BRAMLY: Yes, sure. They were astonished, just like we are, because
they couldn’t understand how one man could do so many things, and, at the same time,
be the most handsome, the most pretty, good-looking man, incredible singer, musician, horseman. They called him Divino, for divine. JEFFREY BROWN: Inside the chateau, a recreation
of Leonardo’s life here, including a studio with reproductions of two of the paintings
he brought with him and continued to work on. SERGE BRAMLY: Leonardo says that, in his work,
there are two steps. The first one, he called imitazione, to catch
the exact image of something, like with photography. But that’s not art. Mirrors do that. And mirrors are not very arty. The second step is what he called the idea,
or concepto, the idea, the concept behind it. Leonardo wrote a lot about his art. He says painting is a fiction. It’s not reality. It’s a fiction, but it’s a fiction that tells
great things. But, also, you have to move the viewer. If it’s just pretty, it’s not enough. It has to do something to your emotions, to
your heart or your brain. It has to move you and change you. JEFFREY BROWN: The greatest example of all,
of course, is back at the Louvre, the Mona Lisa. And this is as close as any of us will likely
ever get. Given its enormous popularity, some 30,000
visitors a day crowding and selfie-ing through, museum officials have kept it in its regular
space. But it is in the exhibition in an infrared,
reflectograph version that exposes the lines beneath the surface of the most famous smile
in art history, more insight into how Leonardo worked. One painting not here? The still-controversial Salvator Mundi. After several leading experts decided it is
by Leonardo… MAN: So, ladies and gentlemen, we move to
the Leonardo da Vinci, the Salvator Mundi. JEFFREY BROWN: … it sold at auction in 2017
for a record $450 million. Here, instead, a copy from the same period. And there were other curatorial dramas, including
a last-minute lawsuit to keep the fragile Vitruvian Man from leaving its home in Venice. The suit failed, making curator Vincent Delieuvin
a happy, if tired, man. VINCENT DELIEUVIN: Well, everybody in the
Louvre Museum is today absolutely conscious that that was the most difficult exhibition
we ever organized. JEFFREY BROWN: This was the most difficult? VINCENT DELIEUVIN: The most difficult, clearly. You know, when you are a curator of an exhibition,
you are a little bit crazy. You want everything. But, at the end, so, what we wanted to say
on Leonardo da Vinci is already there and expressed with the works we have here. JEFFREY BROWN: Leonardo da Vinci was 67 when
he died in Amboise in 1519. Outside the small chapel where he was laid
to rest, Serge Bramly reflected on his lasting impact. SERGE BRAMLY: It’s a kind of model for today’s
man, woman, of a man so curious of everything, that he says it’s not impossible to understand
life, things, the creation. JEFFREY BROWN: The Louvre’s Leonardo exhibition
runs through February 24, 2020. For the “PBS NewsHour,” I’m Jeffrey Brown
in Paris. JUDY WOODRUFF: On the “NewsHour” online: Art
therapy has been used to help patients for decades, but now researchers and physicians
are looking at how it can also help health care providers who are at risk of severe stress
and burnout. You can learn more on our Web site, PBS.org/NewsHour. And a correction note before we go. In last night’s story about DNA and law enforcement,
we stated that Brian Dripps was charged and convicted for the murder of Angie Dodge. He has been charged, but not convicted. His trial is set for June 2021. “NewsHour” regrets the error. And that is the “NewsHour” for tonight. I’m Judy Woodruff. Have a great weekend. Thank you, and good night.




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